Amazon approached Tesco and Sainsbury’s over separate deals to sell the supermarkets’ products on its website but was rebuffed by both, it can be revealed.
Senior figures at the online giant made overtures to Tesco in an effort to persuade the firm to sell its F&F clothing range, people with knowledge of the matter told the Press Association.
However, following an exploratory meeting around 18 months ago, talks fizzled out.
A Tesco spokesman said: “Our only conversations with Amazon related to our F&F clothing brand, which led to nothing.”
Separately, Amazon approached Sainsbury’s regarding a deal to sell products on its platform.
It came well before the supermarket announced its £12 bn (€13.6 bn) deal to merge with Asda weeks ago.
But Amazon was rebuffed by Sainsbury’s, which viewed the proposition as competitively disadvantageous, a source said.
The news comes as the web giant makes a concerted effort to take a bigger slice of the British grocery market. The online titan already has a similar deal with Morrisons in the UK, whereby it sells fresh, chilled and frozen food produced by the grocery firm.
It also runs Amazon Fresh, its nascent delivery business, but is keen to push further into the sector.
Amazon also splashed out more than £10 bn to acquire supermarket chain Whole Foods last year, the internet giant’s biggest foray into the grocery sector to date, giving the group control over seven UK stores.
The revelations come just weeks after it was reported that Amazon also attempted to open talks with the John Lewis Partnership over a takeover of Waitrose last year.
Britain’s supermarket sector is going through a period of rapid change, with the rise of Aldi and Lidl having eroded the market share of the traditional Big Four players – Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda and Morrisons.
Tesco’s recently completed £3.7 billion takeover of Booker is also set to spark a flurry of deals, the latest being Sainsbury’s shock merger with Asda.
The duo came clean two weeks ago about the deal, which will see the creation of a supermarket titan with a bigger market share than Tesco.
Sainsbury’s and Amazon declined to comment.