Blue Apron shares hit as Amazon files for meal-kit trademark

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After incautiously warning potential investors that the company might never turn a profit due to its rather narrow market and cost-heavy business model, the company announced its IPO nearly simultaneously against news of a mega-merger that threatened its very existence and then listed directly into the wrath of a mini-crash in tech stocks. Blue Apron had to settle for $10, and that may still have been too high.

Blue Apron isn't the only company in this market, but it was establishing itself as the top brand. And with this summer heat making us all a little nutty, Bezos has apparently chose to whip out the bonesaw.


This fresh ambition by Amazon will no doubt threaten meal-kits provider Blue Apron, which just recently listed on the public market. "You be the chef". It describes prepared food kits "composed of meat, poultry, fish, seafood, fruit and/or and vegetables and also including sauces or seasonings, ready for cooking and assembly as a meal". The trademark application was filed by Amazon Technologies, an Amazon subsidiary. Amazon already offers meal kits, such as one from Sequential Brands Group Inc.'s Martha Stewart brand. Just last week, the stock closed at a new low after an analyst slapped Blue Apron with a $2 price target, citing difficulty with the business ever becoming profitable.

Amazon weighed on last month's Blue Apron IPO. Perhaps Bezos is shorting the stock and trying to get his portfolio to match the aggressively "swole" look that he is now showing off at Sun Valley. Pricing will be key for any service going forward-Blue Apron's per-serving price is similar to that of partner meal kits on Amazon Fresh (about $9.99 per serving). An even bigger threat is the possibility of Amazon.com, Inc. The tag line - "We do the prep".

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