When Wal-Mart Stores Inc bought online retailer Jet.com for $3 billion last year, it marked a crucial moment – the world’s largest brick-and-mortar retailer, after years of ceding e-commerce leadership to arch rival Amazon, intended to compete. On Friday, Amazon.com Inc countered. With its $14 billion purchase of grocery chain Whole Foods Market Inc, the largest e-commerce company announced its intention to take on Wal-Mart in the brick-and-mortar world. The two deals make it clear that the lines that divided traditional retail from e-commerce are disappearing and sector dominance will no longer be bound by e-commerce or brick-and-mortar, but by who is better at both.
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