Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) Wants Other People to Build Its next Hardware Hit

Amazon.com, Inc. NASDAQ:AMZN

Amazon.com, Inc.  launched a new mini-store this week in the hopes of finding the next big thing in the world of consumer goods. Known as Amazon Launchpad, the marketplace assists entrepreneurs in starting, marketing and distributing their products to potentially millions of customers. Many big crowdfunding platforms and venture capital firms are joining the fray.


Will Amazon Find the Next GoPro Inc ?

Amazon Launchpad is an ecommerce platform that is dedicated entirely to products developed by hardware startups and crowdfunded campaigns. Akin to Bigcommerce and Shopify, entrepreneurs with new products can launch a storefront, create custom product pages, manage inventory and produce marketing campaigns.

More than 200 products – beauty, food, gadgets and home – are already being stocked on the new digital space. Some of the items for sale include a digital tape measure, a smartphone-controlled paper airplane, natural dog treats and an electric skateboard.

Amazon VP Jim Adkins said in a statement that this new initiative gives startups a level playing field. Access to an immense market is another benefit. The website receives millions of visitors per month. More importantly, these companies can tap into the online giant’s shipping and fulfillment infrastructure.

As the pace of innovation continues to increase within the startup community, we want to help customers discover these unique products and learn the inspiration behind them. We also know from talking to startups that bringing a new product to market successfully can be just as challenging as building it,” Adkins said in a press release.

The tech titan is working with 25 crowdfunding websites, startup accelerators and venture capital firms. Some of the names you’ll know: Indiegogo, Andreessen Horowitz and Y Combinator.

Marc Andreessen, Co-Founder and General Partner of Andreessen Horowitz, described Launchpad as ideal for “most innovative young tech companies.” He added Amazon is creating another “real ecosystem” for invention and innovation.

This can be a boon for any startup, but it can reduce the amount of control and earnings a firm’s products. It is remains unknown as to how much of a percentage Amazon will receive from sales.

What Amazon Launchpad Will Achieve

Amazon  is certainly looking to grab the next multi-billion-dollar product like GoPro. At the same time, it’ll also achieve a number of other things.

In today’s marketplace, consumers are seeking out individualized goods. The major retail giants are realizing this since they’re losing out on roughly $4 billion a year to the smaller companies.

Amazon could also take away market share from some other popular websites like Product Hunt and Shopify. Also, late last year, eBay Inc  partnered with CircleUp to create Innovators Collective, a platform similar to Amazon’s latest marketplace. EBay ended this week its one-hour delivery service, eBay Now.

This isn’t the first time that Amazon has attempted to curry favor with entrepreneurs and small businesses. This past spring, Amazon created Amazon Exclusives and Handmade at Amazon.

What else will Amazon venture into? It seems like it has done everything: same-day deliveries, PC gaming development, drones, entertainment production and the list goes on.

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