Amazon's new Polish site goes live as online competition grows

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Amazon is seen at the company logistics centre in Boves, France, August 8, 2018. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol

WARSAW (Reuters) - Online retailer Amazon’s new Polish website went live on Tuesday morning, the company said, marking a significant intensification of competition in the country’s booming e-commerce sector.

Amazon had said in January it would open a Polish site to better serve local customers previously reliant on its German version but did not set a date. The news had sent shares in Polish e-commerce firm Allegro sharply lower on the day.

On Tuesday, shares in Allegro were up 2.4% at 0923 GMT.

“We are thrilled to launch and to be able to offer Polish customers a selection of more than 100 million products, including tens of thousands of products from local Polish businesses,” Alex Ootes, Vice President, European Expansion for Amazon, said in a statement.

In a statement emailed to Reuters on Tuesday morning, Allegro Chief Executive Francois Nuyts said “At Allegro, we focus primarily on customers” but he did not directly refer to the Amazon move.

Poland’s growing e-commerce market was given a further boost from online shopping during the pandemic and in October, home-grown eBay rival, Allegro, enjoyed a buoyant stock market debut, followed in January by parcel storage firm InPost.

Reporting by Alan Charlish, Anna Wlodarczak-Semczuk, Michael Kahn and Agnieszka Barteczko; Editing by Keith Weir and Louise Heavens