Sander Scholten is medeoprichter van WebshopOvername.nl en specialist in de financiële en operationele kant van Webshopovernames.
Most online entrepreneurs today use additional sales channels in addition to their online store. These are usually sales accounts on the marketplaces of parties such as eBay, Bol.com and Amazon. These accounts are normally linked to the own web store so that stock and prices match. The importance of these channels seems to be increasing and sales accounts on these platforms are already seen as real 'shop in shops'. With the increase in importance of these accounts, their marketability has also become a relevant issue.
Amazon started as an online book seller: as early as 1995 Amazon started its operations and since 1997 Amazon has been listed on the NASDAQ. Since that time, Amazon has grown into a huge e-commerce company with almost worldwide coverage, which is unparalleled in the Western world. To date, Amazon has virtually not focused on the Netherlands and Belgium, although a semi-translated version of the platform has been available on Amazon.nl since 2014, primarily featuring books. The idea seems to be that we will also find our way to the German Amazon.de and the English Amazon.co.uk.
It will be clear: Amazon has a huge network and as a online business owner you can make use of this nowadays. Amazon has opened up its platform, and with it its reach, to third parties by means of so-called seller accounts. You can see these accounts as a shop in shop, as the Bijenkorf, for example, does with various brands. As a shop owner, this can be an interesting way to take the first steps abroad, for example.
These sales accounts have grown enormously, especially in the neighbouring countries of the Netherlands, making them an important sales channel for many web store owners. In addition to the regular sales accounts, Amazon also offers a full-service variant, where they not only open up the network and pass on orders to third-party sellers, but also take over logistics and customer service. Sellers then not only use Amazon as a sales channel, but also place their stock in Amazon's warehouses and have the order processing handled by them. This is called "fulfilment by Amazon" (also "FBA"). As a seller, you then only focus on the product selection and the on-time delivery of the products to Amazon's warehouses and on the marketing & sales: Amazon does the rest. Not surprisingly, this way of working has taken off. In fact, it is so popular that several investors are actively buying up and bundling FBA accounts.
To clarify the spelling: In Europe we talk about 'fulfilment by Amazon'. In America, they talk about 'fulfillment by Amazon' (double 'l'). This is not a typo: Americans write fulfillment in a different way than the rest of the English-speaking world. In the Netherlands, we are also used to the version with a single 'l'.
On our website, you will find mainly online businesses and websites that are eligable for takeover. But with the increase in the use of sales accounts, we also offer sellers of Amazon FBA accounts the opportunity to offer them on our platform: the target group for these accounts overlaps with our buyers file and they are, just like the Bol.com sales accounts, an interesting addition to the regular online businesses
Amazon FBA sales accounts are now a thriving international business but before buying or selling you should look carefully at the transferability:
The buyer and seller of a sales account can arrange the transfer without Amazon's intervention. The seller transfers the login of the account to the buyer, after which the buyer can change all the data himself (make sure that the bank account number is also changed!). An important point to note here is that the buyer will be asked for a TAX ID. This must be present. Especially if you are going to offer your products in several European countries and maybe even in America. Note: we hear that Amazon does not always cooperate with the transfer. So always draw up an acquisition agreement subject to a successful transfer.
An additional advantage when selling an Amazon FBA account is that there is no need to move the stock: it is already in Amazon's warehouse, only the owner has changed with the Fulfilment by Amazon account transfer.
A second concern is payment terms: Amazon pays sellers a few weeks after a consumer places an order. So, in the period before the transfer, the FBA account seller may have already delivered the order, for which the FBA account buyer receives payment from Amazon. This can be easily settled but is something to keep an eye on during the transfer.
The acquisition of an Amazon FBA account is basically a business acquisition like others, but as in every industry and with every type of business there are specific idiosyncrasies to watch out for this is of course also the case with Fulfilment of Amazon accounts Below we give in ten steps the most important tips we have for the acquisition of an Amazon FBA account:
(most Amazon FBA accounts are transferred through an asset transaction and that's where the tips go)
Our website has its focus on selling and buying webstores, but the acquisition of FBA accounts is also supported on the platform. As a buyer you can find the accounts between the regular offerings on our platform. As a seller, you can register on the platform in the regular way. When you register, the URL to the FBA account can be included as a reference.