“Bezos and Amazon may very well have built the most competitive company ever”

Looks as though I’m not the only person thinking in these terms:

Check out the International Business Times, which furnished the headline quote above.

Or how about this, from Om Malik, which picks up on the “new Wal-Mart” theme I hinted at in my previous post.  Om’s picture tells a thousand words, of course:

In this context, worrying about Amazon acquiring the Book Depository starts to feel like counting small change in the path of a hurricane.  It does, however, beg an uncomfortable question about the level of power that individual corporations enjoy, when they not only do what they do, very well, but they also own the technology, and deliver a full service relationship to the consumer.

It’s good news for the customer, who likes the total offer – at least until the competition has all disappeared, and the cost of entry becomes too high for anyone else.

To put this another way, Wal-Mart and Tesco are huge because they provide the best offer for the customer.  However, they are the current iteration of a model that goes back through Safeway and J Sainsbury to Piggly-Wiggly and the International Stores.  Anyone could open a supermarket, and focus on points of difference; however, if your business is virtual, you can eliminate all of the location/service elements that enable physical stores to distinguish themselves, and lock your customers into an absolute relationship.

Amazon (and Apple) could dominate to a far greater extent than Wal-Mart ever dreamt of.  Imagine the Ford Motor Company building cars that only ran on FoMoCo roads, using FoMoCo gasoline.  Oh, and they had bought out the oil companies, and GM, VW and Toyota, at the Book Depository stage of their development…..