Amazon.com Will Launches French Store Featuring Books, Music, DVDs and Videos; Amazon.fr is Third European Site, Serves Global French-Speaking Market
SEATTLE--Aug. 29, 2000--Leading online retailer Amazon.com (www.amazon.com) announced today it will launch Amazon.fr, a French-language site offering books, music CDs, DVDs and videos dedicated to customers in France and to French-speaking customers around the world.
Amazon.fr will launch early Thursday morning Paris time. Amazon disclosed its plans at a press preview today in Paris.
Amazon.fr is Amazon.com, Inc.'s third European site and offers the complete catalogue of French titles. "We're grateful to the tens of thousands of French customers who have shopped at Amazon.com during the past five years," said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com. "With the launch of Amazon.fr, we're making the Amazon shopping experience -- with our obsession on customers -- available to French-speaking customers everywhere."
"This is a store created for and designed by French people, which for the first time will allow French literature, music, film and culture to be accessed easily and quickly by people around the globe," said Diego Piacentini, Amazon.com senior vice president and general manager, international. "As with the universal Amazon focus on the customer experience, we'll provide vast selection, great prices, excellent customer service and 24-hour-a-day, seven-day-a-week convenience. This is one further step in our plans to become a global merchandiser."
Amazon.fr will be supported by two facilities in France, with operations and administration at Guyancourt and a distribution center in Orleans. Customer service needs will be handled through Amazon's pan-European customer service center in The Hague, the Netherlands. That facility employs native French speakers to work with Amazon.fr customers.
Amazon.com (Amazon.com, Inc., and its subsidiaries) is the Internet's No. 1 music, No. 1 DVD and video, and No. 1 book retailer. Amazon.com (Nasdaq:AMZN) opened its virtual doors on the World Wide Web in July 1995 and today offers Earth's Biggest Selection, along with online auctions and free electronic greeting cards. Amazon.com seeks to be the world's most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online.
Amazon.com lists more than 18 million unique items in categories including books, CDs, toys, electronics, videos, DVDs, tools and hardware, lawn and patio items, kitchen products, software, and video games. Through Amazon.com zShops, any business or individual can sell virtually anything to Amazon.com's more than 23 million customers, and with Amazon.com Payments, sellers can accept credit card transactions, avoiding the hassles of offline payments. The company also participates in sothebys.amazon.com, the leading auction site for guaranteed art, jewelry and collectibles, at www.sothebys.amazon.com.
Amazon.com operates three international Web sites: www.amazon.fr, www.amazon.co.uk and www.amazon.de. It also operates the Internet Movie Database (www.imdb.com), the Web's comprehensive and authoritative source of information on more than 220,000 movies and entertainment programs and 800,000 cast and crew members dating from the birth of film in 1892 to 2003.
Amazon Anywhere is the leader in mobile e-commerce, providing access from anywhere in the world to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.de on personal digital assistants (PDAs) and through handheld wireless Internet devices that use HDML or the Wireless Application Protocol.
Amazon.com has invested in leading Internet retailers that are improving the lives of customers by making shopping easier and more convenient: Greenlight.com, the only company that offers car buyers the control of auto purchasing online with ongoing service and support from local dealerships, at www.greenlight.com; drugstore.com, an online retail and information source for health, beauty, wellness, personal care and pharmacy, at www.drugstore.com; Pets.com, the online leader for pet products, expert information, and services, at www.pets.com; HomeGrocer.com, the first fully integrated Internet grocery-shopping and home-delivery service -- with operations in Seattle; Portland, Oregon; and Southern California -- at www.homegrocer.com; Gear.com, which offers brand-name sporting goods at prices from 20 to 90 percent off retail, at www.gear.com; Ashford.com, the leading Internet retailer of luxury and premium products and the Web's No. 1 retailer of watches and jewelry, at www.ashford.com; Audible, Inc., the leader in Internet-delivered spoken audio for PC-based listening or playback on AudibleReady portable digital audio devices, at www.audible.com; and eZiba.com, a leading online retailer of handcrafted products from around the world, at www.eziba.com.
Amazon.com also has a minority interest in WeddingChannel.com, which brings together leading retailers with gift registry, expert advice and personalized gift suggestions to help everyone give and receive the right wedding gifts, at www.weddingchannel.com; NextCard, Inc., considered the industry's leading issuer of consumer credit on the Internet, at www.nextcard.com; and Kozmo.com, the world's leading "e-mmediate" Internet-to-door delivery service, at www.kozmo.com.
This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that include, among others, Amazon.com's limited operating history, anticipated losses, significant amount of indebtedness, unpredictability of future revenues, potential fluctuations in quarterly operating results, seasonality, consumer trends, competition, risk of distribution center expansion, risks related to fourth quarter performance, risks of system interruption, management of potential growth, inventory risks, risks related to auction and zShops services, risks related to fraud and Amazon.com Payments, and risks of new business areas, international expansion, business combinations, strategic alliances and the Amazon Commerce Network. More information about factors that potentially could affect
Amazon.com's financial results is included in Amazon.com's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 1999, and its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 2000, and June 30, 2000.