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Inside Amazon (Jan 9th, 2018)

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Whole Foods Markets wants its suppliers to pay for display at its stores, a move that has upset some smaller vendors. Critics say that Whole Foods, which was purchased by Amazon in 2017, is pushing out the mom-and-pop sellers for larger chains. Whole Foods allowed suppliers to oversee their own merchandise or hire local firms to do so. Under new rules, Whole Foods is requiring suppliers to work exclusively with Daymon, a Stamford, Connecticut-based retail strategy firm, and its subsidiary, SAS Retail Services, to schedule in-store tastings, check inventory on shelves and create displays on their behalf. — CHICAGO TRIBUNE

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Jeff Bezos is now the richest person in history. The CEO of Amazon has a net worth of about $105.1 billion, according to Bloomberg's billionaire tracker. The majority of that net worth comes from the 78.9 million shares of Amazon stock he owns. Shares of Amazon are up nearly 7 percent so far in 2018. Bezos' other holdings include the Washington Post and Blue Origin, a private space travel business. Bill Gates was in second place on the billionaires list, with a worth of $93.3 billion. — CNN

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Amazon is making a push to bring high-end cosmetics to its online platform, despite years of reluctance from some luxury companies. Amazon has become the largest online beauty retailer in the U.S., with 21 percent of the market, according to analysis company 1010Data. While brands such as Clairol and CoverGirl area available on Amazon, some premium brands, such as Estée Lauder and Sephora have resisted selling on Amazon because they believed it standardized their products and lessened the appeal for high-end customers. — BLOOMBERG

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Startup Vuzix has partnered with Amazon to incorporate Alexa into a pair of augmented reality glasses. The glasses can accept commands from Alexa and display information about what’s in the wearer’s view. The Vuzix glasses are set to hit the market in the second quarter and will initially sell for around $1,000, with the goal of ultimately lowering the price to under $500 by 2019. The product was unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. — PAYMENTS

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Toni Reid, vice president of Alexa Experience and Echo Devices at Amazon, spoke with Fortune about the future of conversational devices. "We think voice is a big part of the future—we believe that voice will fundamentally improve the way people interact with technology because of its ability to make the complex simple," Reid said. The executive also talks about how brands and markets can use Alexa and the potential for advertising revenue on the device. — FORTUNE

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