Amazon has decided to pull the plug on its food delivery business, Amazon Food, in India, the company said on Friday. The company's food delivery business caters to customers across Bengaluru and has been competing with online food aggregators such as Swiggy and Zomato in the segment.

In a letter sent to the restaurant partners, the e-commerce giant said that the food delivery services will discontinue from December 29, as part of the company’s annual operating planning review process. 

The letter said, “After a careful evaluation, we have decided to discontinue Amazon Food from December 29, 2022. This decision means that you will no longer get orders from customers via Amazon Food after this date. You will continue to receive orders till then and we expect you to continue fulfilling those orders.”

 The company began its operations across the food delivery segment in May 2020 pertinently in Bengaluru. The company said it will close the food delivery segment in a phased manner to take care of its current customers and partners. 

An Amazon spokesperson said, “As part of our annual operating planning review process, we have made the decision to discontinue Amazon Food. We don't take these decisions lightly. We are discontinuing these programs in a phased manner to take care of current customers and partners."

The development comes a day after the ecommerce giant announced that it will discontinue operations of its edtech services Amazon Academy starting August 2023, when its existing batch completes the test preparation module. The company has said that the decision has been taken following its assessment. 

“At Amazon, we think big, experiment, and invest in new ideas to delight customers. We also continually evaluate the progress and potential of our products and services to deliver customer value, and we regularly make adjustments based on those assessments. Following an assessment we have made the decision to discontinue Amazon Academy,” the company said in a statement.

The company has said it'll wind down the programme in a phased manner to take care of current customers. It will discontinue the online academy’s operations starting August 2023, when its existing batch completes the test preparation module.

Additionally, the company has said its customers will have access to full course material online for an extended period of a year, until October 2024. In addition, Amazon Academy will refund the full fee to those enrolled in the current academic batch.

Notably, according to reports, the company is also planning to pull the curtains on its Amazon distribution services in India that distributes fast-moving consumer goods from companies to retailers. The company’s distribution services mainly operate across Bengaluru, Hubli and Mysore. 

Queries sent to Amazon India regarding this did not elicit any response. The copy will be updated after the responses are received. 

The development comes at the heels of mass layoffs of as many as 10,000 employees by the company globally. This will be the largest layoff in the company’s corporate history. In India, the layoffs are likely to affect hundreds of employees. The company has as many as one lakh employees in India. 

Last week, the labour ministry summoned the ecommerce firm for discussion regarding the layoffs in India, following a complaint filed by the employee union Nascent Information Technology Employee Senate (NITES). NITES has alleged that the layoffs and the voluntary separation program by the company were unethical and illegal, and requested interference and that the union has received several complaints from the employees that they are being forced to quit the company. 

However, Amazon has maintained that no employee has been forced to resign. 

Meanwhile, the company is planning to make an investment of $4.4 billion and support over 48,000 full-time jobs in India, through the launch of its second cloud service unit Amazon Web Services (AWS) infrastructure region in India — the AWS Asia Pacific (Hyderabad) Region.

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