Amazon (AMZN) – Get Report confirmed this week that it will be opening a brick-and-mortar grocery store in a 43,000 square-foot building in suburban Chicago.The store won’t be part of its high-tech cashierless Amazon Go store chain, nor will it be a Whole Foods store, but will instead be more like a traditional grocery store. “Amazon is opening a grocery store in Schaumburg in 2020,” a company spokesperson said earlier this week, according to Arlington Heights, Illinois-based newspaper The Daily Herald. The store will be located at the Schaumburg Corners Shopping Center. The space was formerly a Babies R Us, the newspaper said.Amazon recorded a breakthrough for its grocery business in its first quarter earnings release after reporting four quarters of essentially flat sales. Physical store sales totaled $4.64 billion in the first quarter, an 8% year-over-year increase, driven primarily the company’s Whole Foods business. Physical store sales rose 6.3% sequentially, after falling 0.9% year-over-year in the fourth quarter. Amazon’s physical store sales for 2019 were $17.19 billion, a 0.2% decline from $17.22 billion in 2018.Separately, Amazon is escalating its hiring surge during the coronavirus pandemic, announcing plans Thursday to convert the majority of its recently-hired 175,000 temporary staffers to full-time employees.Amazon will convert 125,000 of the 175,000 temporary hires brought on to deal with the crush of online ordering amid the deadly epidemic to full-time status in June, the company told Reuters.Full-time jobs at the company come with a minimum wage of $15 an hour.Amazon shares were up 0.15% to $2,414 Thursday. Amazon is a holding in Jim Cramer’s Action Alerts PLUS member club. Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells AMZN? Learn more now.
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