Amazon's 2nd Prime Day orders breezed past first-year totals

AP News
|
Posted: Jul 13, 2016 3:29 PM
Amazon's 2nd Prime Day orders breezed past first-year totals

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon's big sales day is here to stay.

Amazon says Prime Day orders rose 60 percent globally this year versus last year's inaugural showing. It says sales of Amazon's own electronic devices were particularly strong.

And the company says that this won't be the last "Prime Day."

"After yesterday's results, we'll definitely be doing this again," Greg Greeley, Amazon Prime vice president, said on Wednesday.

The e-commerce powerhouse launched the event last July to promote its $99 annual Prime loyalty program, which offers free two-day shipping and other perks. The loyalty program is a key platform for Amazon because Prime members shop more frequently and spend more money.

After some morning checkout glitches Tuesday, sales accelerated later in the day. For example, the company said it had sold 22,000 TVs in the U.S. by 11 a.m. Eastern time, but that number grew to 90,000 by the end of the day.

The Fire TV stick was the best-selling Amazon device and it was the biggest sales day for Amazon's smart speaker the Echo.

The Seattle company did not disclose any specific sales figures.

Sales were offered in the U.S., Canada and Europe where Prime membership is available. Amazon says orders grew 50 percent in the U.S. alone.

PiperJaffray analyst Gene Munster said Amazon's results beat his expectations for 37 percent growth, and the results solidify Prime Day as an annual holiday sales day.

"While many investors had feared that early day cart glitches would hinder Prime Day, we believe that the results indicate that the Amazon Prime brand remains strong and user engagement continues to improve," he said in a note to clients.

Benchmark analyst Daniel Kurnos said that while he didn't find that many "compelling" deals on the site, and that some deals were on older models of goods, Prime Day was an example of "how to make clearance look good." He estimates the day added 3 percentage points to quarterly revenue and 6 million new Prime members. Amazon, which doesn't disclose the number of Prime members it has other than that it is in the "tens of millions," did not comment on how many new Prime members signed up for the program during the sale.

Amazon.com Inc. shares slipped $4.56 to $753.65 in afternoon trading Wednesday. Its shares are up 63 percent over the past year.