Hola, Amazon: The company is officially launching in Spain today, as reported last week.
Amazon (NSDQ: AMZN) is opening its Spanish storefront with only physical goods: over 2.5 million books in Spanish and other languages along with CDs, DVDs, electronics and other consumer products. The company is also offering two- to three-day shipping through Amazon Prime for €14.95 ($20.52/£13) per year. Amazon Prime is $79 (£50.03) per year in the U.S., €49 ($67.27/£42.61) in France, €29 ($39.81/£25.22) in Germany and €9.99 ($13.72/£8.69) in Italy.
In a research note, Barclays Capital analyst Anthony J. DiClemente writes, “We believe the launch ahead of the holidays and relatively attractive Prime pricing could help build early adoption and loyalty.” Barclays also notes,
eMarketer estimates that the Spanish e-commerce market is the fourth largest in Europe (after the UK, Germany, and France) at $15 (£9.5) billion in 2011E and growing to $26.4 (£16.72) billion by 2015E resulting in the second fastest growing market in Western Europe with a 16.5% percent 5-year CAGR in 2010-15, second only to Italy. As a result, Amazon will possess stand-alone sites in the five largest e-commerce markets in Europe.
We believe the launch of Spain could add some revenue upside in 4Q11 and 2012 based on the benefits of the localized country site and aggressive Prime pricing. However, new country sites often take a year or two to become profitable, and Amazon is still working through the launch of Italy not quite one year ago.
Amazon.es is not selling e-books yet. Amazon opened the UK Kindle Store in August 2010, and the German Kindle Store this past April. Meanwhile, Sony (NYSE: SNE) is planning its e-bookstore’s European launch for October, and Kobo said previously that it would open its Spanish language e-bookstore by the end of the summer.