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Amazon Pulls Plug on Amazon Shipping

Newser — Jenn Gidman

Because of the coronavirus, Amazon is dealing with so many delivery orders right now that it just decided to rob its own Peter to pay Paul. Sources tell the Wall Street Journal that, starting in June, the e-commerce giant will halt Amazon Shipping, a fledgling service available in just a few cities and a direct competitor to UPS and FedEx.

The program sends Amazon drivers right to businesses to pick up packages for consumers, instead of the usual route of packages shipped from Amazon warehouses. The parent company decided that, considering current circumstances, it needs its workers and resources fully focused on the main business.

"We understand this is a change to your business, and we did not take this decision lightly," Amazon said in a note to firms who use the service.

"We will work with you over the next several weeks so there is as little disruption to your business as possible."

The Journal notes that both FedEx and UPS have seen a "Christmas-like boom" in residential deliveries, as so many people are now holed up at home, though shipments to retailers and other businesses have dropped.

For its own main delivery service, Amazon plans on hiring 100,000 part-time and full-time workers to deal with the recent ordering surge during "this stressful time," it notes in a recent company blog post.

Yahoo Finance notes that following the news of Amazon's move, FedEx and UPS shares swelled in after-hours trading, each registering a 3%-plus uptick. UPS didn't offer comment on the development, but a FedEx spokeswoman tells the Journal: "We are continuing to work with our small-business customers during this time to support their growth."

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