Make us your home page
Instagram

Will Woot.com retain its hoot under Amazon.com?

The smartest move Amazon.com made buying Zappos last year was deciding not to change the online shoe retail giant. Hopefully, Amazon will be as hands-off with its purchase of woot.com.

Because Woot is a hoot.

Since 2004, this snarky, buy-it-now-or-you'll-never-see-it-again retailer has built a cult following of 2.7 million deal-driven fans who spend $164 million a year.

It's a next-generation version of the Crazy Eddie school of retailing.

At midnight daily, woot.com posts just one bargain — usually an electronic gadget — until noon or until the supply is gone. That's it. No returns, no guarantee beyond the manufacturer's. Questions about the product beyond an FAQ list? Consult Google or a Magic 8 Ball, the website advises. If you don't like what's delivered, customers are told, put it on eBay.

Amazon pledges to keep Woot just as it is. But the Dallas-based site posted a rap tune with its monkey puppet mascot joking about the new boss:

No more calling in sick with "fictitious diseases to spend your day at Chuck E. Cheese's" and no more rolling in late "with your pajamas on."

" 'Cause when you roll with the 'Zon, you roll legit" was one line from the song.

What else can you expect from an irreverent discounter known for describing a grab bag of closeout items as "a bag of crap"?

"This will be as if we are simply adding one person to the organizational hierarchy," founder and CEO Matt Rutledge assured workers. "Except that person will be a billion-dollar company that can sell you like office furniture."

True to form, on the day of the sale, the "woot" was an Amazon Kindle that undercut parent-to-be Amazon.com by $40.

• • •

Old-school Floridians are often surprised Publix Super Markets stores have spread to five states and as far north as Nashville.

But in 19 years, the formerly Florida-only grocer has stunned its industry with the speed it took over the Atlanta market, which had been regarded an impregnable fortress for rival Kroger Inc.

This summer, Publix, which has 143 stores around Atlanta, edged past Kroger, capturing 27 percent of the market vs. Kroger's 26 percent, according to the Shelby Report of the Southeast.

• • •

Kohl's, Publix and Sweetbay Supermarket have started opening LEED-designed stores, a construction industry standard for green buildings. Now Office Depot has jumped on the LEED bandwagon.

The nation's biggest office supply retailer, Office Depot set a goal of reducing its carbon footprint not just through construction, but also in recycling packaging and the products it sells.

The Boca Raton-based company will use LEED standards in all new construction — 14 stores this year — plus in its energy-efficiency tactics in store relocations and remodeling as the chain begins cutting the average size of its warehouse-sized stores in half to 16,000 square feet.

Updated stores will be carpeted, painted subdued colors, equipped with efficient air conditioning and lit by fixtures that use a fraction of the energy older models used.

Mark Albright can be reached at albright@sptimes.com or (727) 893-8252.

Will Woot.com retain its hoot under Amazon.com? 07/05/10 [Last modified: Monday, July 5, 2010 7:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. A new app will help you find your favorite Tampa Bay food trucks

    Food & Dining

    What's new: Food tech

    Local food businesses are embracing new technologies and partnerships to bring us extra deliciousness.

    Michael Blasco of Tampa Bay Food Trucks says that everyone always asked about an app to help find their favorite food trucks. There is, available for iPhones and Droids.
  2. Another Pinellas foreclosure auction fools bidders, raises questions

    Real Estate

    For the second time in six weeks, a company connected to lawyer Roy C. Skelton stood poised to profit from a Pinellas County foreclosure auction that confused even experienced real estate investors.

    A Palm Harbor company bid  $112,300 for  this Largo townhome at a foreclosure auction July 21 not realizing the auction involved a second mortgage, connected to lawyer and  real estate investor Roy Skelton -- and that the bank could still foreclose on the  first mortgage.
[SUSAN TAYLOR MARTIN   |   Times]
  3. Clearwater-based USAmeriBank acquired by New Jersey bank in $816 million deal

    Banking

    CLEARWATER — USAmeriBancorp, Inc., based in Clearwater, is being acquired by New Jersey's Valley National Bancorp in an $816 million deal, it was announced today.

    Joe Chillura, CEO of USAmeribank, shown inside a branch in Ybor City in this file photo.
[KATHLEEN FLYNN l Times]
  4. Outback Steakhouse sees growth in U.S. and Brazil markets in second quarter

    Retail

    TAMPA — Restaurant sales were up at Outback Steakhouse and Carrabba's Italian Grill during the second quarter of 2017, but Bonefish Grill continues to lag at Tampa-based Bloomin' Brands.

    The Outback Steakhouse, on 4088 Park St. N, is showin on July 26, 2017. Restaurant sales were up at Outback Steakhouse  and Carrabba's Italian Grill during the second quarter of 2017, but Bonefish Grill continues to lag at Tampa-based Bloomin' Brands. [SCOTT KEELER | Times]
  5. Controversial landfill site could be rechristened as industrial recruiting land in Pasco

    Economic Development

    The east Pasco property of Angelo's Aggregate Materials, which failed to obtain a state environmental permit to be developed as a garbage landfill, is being studied as a potential 1,000-acre mega site for industrial recruitment.