TOKYO -- Amazon Japan will start offering groceries from supermarket chain Life in certain parts of Tokyo by the end of the year, Nikkei has learned, tapping growing demand for convenience among working couples and the elderly.
Customers will be able to order Life products online through the Prime Now delivery service. Life staffers will then pick out the items at the store to be delivered to the customer in as little as two hours.
Delivery fees have not yet been decided. The American e-commerce giant's Japanese unit plans to expand the service to more areas in the future.
The e-tailer is believed to sell roughly 35,000 items currently through Prime Now. It plans to strengthen its offerings of fresh groceries by working with Life, which operates about 270 locations nationwide.
The partnership is expected to add up to 8,000 new items to the Prime Now lineup, including bento boxes prepared in-store, vegetables and Life-brand daily products.
Japan's e-commerce market expanded by 8.6% in 2018 to 1.69 trillion yen ($15.5 billion), according to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. But online shopping accounts for only 2.6% of the entire food market, leaving much room for growth.
Parent Amazon.com already provides deliveries from bricks-and-mortar stores in the U.S.