[London, ENGLAND] Amazon.co.uk
claimed Tuesday it has become the first European e-commerce
site to reach 2 million customers.
The figures make Amazon.co.uk the top e-commerce site in Europe, closely
followed by its stable companions Amazon.com and Amazon.de.
2000 has been an intensive growth period for the U.K. site
in particular, with an average of 125,000 new customers being
added every month. This means that in the last eight months,
Amazon.co.uk has doubled its customer base.
Steve Frazier, Amazon.co.uk managing director, merely
expressed his gratitude that more people were choosing to
shop at Amazon.
Diego Piancentini, Amazon.com’s senior vice president and
general manager for international, put the figures into a
“Today, nearly one-fourth of Amazon’s sales come from outside
the United States, and that number is growing quickly as our
U.K., Germany and France sites work continually to provide
the best customer experience,” said Piancentini.
In the U.K., Amazon achieved a flying start by acquiring
an existing — and successful — bookselling business. Amazon
has added extensively to the store, extending the range
to include computer software, DVDs, videos and auctions.
However, to fully emulate Amazon.com, the U.K. site still
has a long way to go. Amazon.com lists over 18 million unique
items, including such products as tools and hardware, and lawn
and patio equipment which are unlikely to be purchased for
Tuesday’s announcement is an indication that Amazon may be
winning the war against BOL,
its main European rival in online bookselling. To compensate,
BOL has attempted to outflank Amazon by opening more
international sites, in Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia.
Despite Amazon’s success, BOL is proving to be an inventive
and formidable competitor, introducing such innovative projects
as BOL TV — where a different author is interviewed every
day by a U.K. broadcaster.