Amazon and Borders planning same-day book delivery services

Responding to this week's BarnesandNoble.com's launch of same-day book delivery in New York City's core, both Amazon.com and Borders.com are also preparing plans to offer same-day service.

"We announced back in March that Amazon.com had purchased an interest in the delivery service Kozmo.com," said a spokeswoman for Amazon. "Amazon.com does foresee a time when it will work with Kozmo.com to offer same-day delivery."

Under the three-year alliance, Amazon invested $60 million in New York-based Kozmo and will begin offering a one-hour book delivery option to customers, though a timetable is not available. Kozmo already operates one-hour delivery service of other items in New York, Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Chicago, Atlanta, Washington DC, Portland and Houston. By the end of 2000, a half dozen more cities are to be added.

"We're always looking for new way to offer more choices to our customers, whether it's new products or new delivery options," said Joe Galli, president and chief operating officer, Amazon.com. "This agreement provides us a one-hour delivery option for the types of products that customers may want immediately." BarnesandNobles.com's new same-day delivery service enables customers who place orders by 11 a.m. on the company's web site to receive their merchandise by 7 p.m. that day. CitySprint 1-800-deliver picks up the orders from a Barnes and Nobles warehouse in Dayton, NJ, twice each day. Orders are then distributed among messengers who deliver them.

Rich Fahle, content manager for Borders.com, is also looking at improved delivery. "We're definitely looking into same-day delivery," he said. "We're preparing for the possibility of offering that service to our customers, but I think it remains to be seen if this model will work. Borders.com is looking into using our brick-and-mortar stores as a type of warehouse to deliver goods to the customer. There are currently 300-plus Borders stores in the country and that number is growing every day. Plus, we also own 900 Waldenbooks stores located in malls across the US."

Jack Prince, director of Marketing International for CitySprint 1-800-deliver, has his own view about the future of same day delivery.

"It's tomorrow's way of doing business today," said Prince. "Customers want things when they want them. Most internet companies in two to four years will be doing business this way."





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