Feds grant Amazon approval to open Canadian warehouse

Today the Canadian federal government granted Amazon approval under the Canada Investment Act to set up a fulfilment centre warehouse in Canada.  As part of the deal, Amazon will invest more than $20 Million, including $1.5 Million for cultural events and awards and for promoting Canadian-authored books abroad.

Amazon currently uses a Canada Post subsidiary SCI Logistics in Canada because bookselling is part of the culture sector and is protected from foreign ownership.

Amazon’s commitment to Canada also includes adding jobs, improving service for Canadian consumers, and increasing the visibility of Canadian and French-language products on its Amazon.ca website.

Ottawa launched a review of the company’s proposal in January to determine if the investment would be a “net benefit to Canada.” Not surprisingly Heather Reisman, the CEO of Canadian Indigo Books & Music, sent a letter to the Minister of Canadian Heritage asking for clarification on whether book retailing in Canada needs to majority-controlled by Canadians.

Should be interesting to see what happens to Indigo’s stock price tomorrow.