Amazon, the online e-commerce behemoth that delivers millions of packages to New England homes each day, is set open its first grocery stores to Massachusetts. The Boston Business Journal reports that Amazon Fresh will open its first New England location on Route 1 in Saugus, a location that was formerly home to a Big Y grocery store. Amazon would not comment about the pending store opening. The business journal citied Saugus town officials in the report.
The Patriot Ledger reported that construction on another Amazon Fresh grocery store was underway in Braintree, citing town officials there. The former Saks Off 5th store at the Grossman Drive shopping plaza was in the process of being transformed into a 37,500-square-foot Amazon Fresh store. Amazon’s first Fresh store was a 35,000-square-foot traditional supermarket that opened last year in a strip mall in Woodland Hills, California. The Seattle-based company also owns Whole Foods Market, which has dozens of locations across the greater Boston area.
However, the company’s Amazon Fresh stores operate differently, allowing shoppers to load their cart and bags with groceries and then just walk-out, with no traditional check-out process. The technology was first tested in a store next to its Seattle headquarters. It uses sensors and algorithms to determine what has been placed in a shopper’s cart. The purchase is linked to the customer’s Amazon account. Amazon says they also offer traditional checkout lanes for shoppers.
Amazon has eight of its Amazon Fresh grocery stores in California, four in Illinois, one in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia, three in Washington state and one in Washington, D.C. The Amazon Fresh stores will be one of Amazon’s small but growing number of physical store locations in the Boston area. The company has two Amazon Books locations across the area, at Legacy Place in Dedham and MarketStreet in Lynnfield. The company also runs an Amazon 4-Star location, featuring some of its popular website items, at the Natick Mall.
The first Amazon Fresh store, then called Amazon Go, was essentially a convenience store with roughly 1,800 square feet of retail space. Since then, Amazon has expanded into full-sized grocery stores.
Source: WCVB 5