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BLUE APRON CEO: We don't want to compete with Amazon or Whole Foods

Business Insider | Sep 13, 2017, 10.05PM IST

Matt Sulzberg, CEO of Blue Apron at ReCode

Keith MacDonald for Vox Media

Blue Apron CEO Matt Salzberg on stage at Recode's Code Commerce conference

Amazon's $13.7 billion Whole Foods buyout could not have come at a worse time for Blue Apron.

By the time Echo Dot speakers were on sale at the Amazon's newly acquired chain, shares of Blue Apron were already down 46% from its June IPO.

But despite his company's constantly declining stock price and encroaching competition from Amazon and others, CEO Matt Salzberg remains optimistic about Blue Apron's potential market.

"We're not going to go and be a head-to-head mass-market grocer like Amazon and Whole Foods are trying to be. We don't want to be everything to everybody. We are a curated brand with a point of view on home cooking and that lifestyle that surrounds that," he said at a conference hosted by Recode on Wednesday.

"We're going after a gigantic, gigantic market opportunity, and we think we're in the very earliest innings of a gigantic transformation of the offline food industry."

Salzburg, who founded the meal-delivery startup in in 2012, says the Amazon buyout of Whole Foods "was interesting timing, as it related to our IPO for sure, but it didn't change, obviously, our business strategy."

Amazon isn't the only company threatening Blue Apron's grocery delivery market share.Other mass-market grocers - Walmart and Kroger in particular - are bolstering their e-commerce divisions with both in-store pickup and delivery.

Shares of Blue Apron are down 46.49% since its IPO on June 29, at $5.34.

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