* Launches in Netherlands, Sweden, India may follow
* Expansion may boost revenue, pressure margins-analyst
By Alistair Barr
Sept 14 Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O) launched an
online store in Spain on Wednesday, a move that may be the
start of a new international push for the world's largest
Amazon.es was offering books, music, DVDs, electronic,
software and other products when Reuters checked the website
midday Wednesday, Pacific time in the United States.
A version of Amazon's Prime service was also offered on the
new site. Customers can sign up as Amazon Prime members and get
free two- to three- day shipping for 14.95 euros, or about $20,
Amazon Spain launched with a big inventory that includes
2.5 million books, 450,000 CDs, 130,000 DVDs, 65,000
electronics products and a variety of games, toys, watches and
"Amazon is entering a phase of rapid international
expansion, similar to 1998-2002 when it launched in 5 new
countries in 5 years - UK and Germany in 1998, France and Japan
in 2000, Canada in 2002," Mayuresh Masurekar, an analyst at
Collins Stewart, wrote in a note to investors on Wednesday.
After entering China in 2004, Amazon took a breather from
international expansion for several years. But in late 2010,
the company launched in Italy.
Masurekar expects Amazon to start websites in the
Netherlands, Sweden and India within the next three to four
International expansion will help revenue grow, but it
could hit profits, at least in the short term. That's because
Amazon has to spend money upfront to build warehouses,
accumulate inventory and set up shipping and other logistics.
The company also tends to offer promotional discounts when
it enters new markets.
"International expansion supports our thesis of higher
revenues and lower margins," Masurekar said.
Amazon shares rose 1.4 percent to close at $222.57 on
Wednesday, leaving the stock up 22 percent so far this year.
(Reporting by Alistair Barr in San Francisco; Editing by Tim