Blue Apron Holdings Inc. dropped as much as 12 percent after Amazon.com Inc. filed a trademark application for prepared food kits, the latest sign that investors are concerned about newly public Blue Apron's prospects. Now, Amazon is making inroads in Blue Apron's main territory: meal kits.
Amazon has registered a trademark in the USA for a service described as: "We do the prep. You be the chef", according to a filing with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. As the application further explains, the service will be dealing with "prepared food kits ... ready for cooking and assembly as a meal". This includes fruit salads, vegetable salads and soups. The British newspaper reported that Amazon registered a trademark for a food kit business.
On Monday morning, Blue Apron's stock was falling more than 7 percent, hitting an all-time-low and dropping below the $7 mark.
Blue Apron has a lot to prove now and show Wall Street that it's not just a niche business that makes sense as part of a greater delivery empire like Amazon.
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An Amazon spokesperson didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. Amazon already sells meal kits from third party companies like Tyson and the Martha Stewart-Marley Spoon collaboration, and delivers them through Amazon Fresh.
"The target customer who uses a meal kit delivery service is a busy, affluent consumer".
Salzberg, 33, co-founded Blue Apron five years ago. "The application also mentions "...frozen, prepared and packaged meals and food kits consisting primarily of grains, rice noodles, pasta or bakery products..." It seems only logical that Amazon would be watching an area like this very closely, and buy buying Whole Foods, may see an opportunity to pick off that now-low hanging fruit. Over the past year, Amazon also has announced two experimental store concepts in Seattle: Amazon Go, a cashier-less convenience store still in development, and AmazonFresh Pickup, grocery pickup locations.