At Amazon, we are taking advantage of Europe’s maritime conditions and expanding use of waterborne transportation through Amazon Sea. We are operating multiple sea routes to transfer inventory between our buildings in Italy and Spain, benefitting both our customers with broader selection and faster deliveries, and our sellers with wider geographical reach for their products in foreign marketplaces.

Roughly 60 percent of inventory in our logistics network belongs to independent sellers. These are mostly small and medium businesses, who sell on Amazon to reach new customers outside of their home markets.

“Our family has been making pesto sauce in a small shop in Genova since 1947, selling mostly locally. During the pandemic our business suffered its consequences and we decided to try working with Amazon. Since then, our customer base has grown and we have managed to sell our sauces to pesto fans in Spain, France and twelve other countries across Europe,” says Sergio Panizza, from Genova-based business, Pesto Rossi. “By placing our pesto sauce closer to where our customers live, they get our products faster and we benefit from having more international customers.”

Broader selection and faster deliveries for our European customers thanks to Amazon Sea
Broader selection and faster deliveries for our European customers thanks to Amazon Sea
Two people sitting in front of a store in Genoa

To ensure that customers across Europe benefit from wide a selection of products and fast, reliable delivery, we analyze which items are ordered most frequently by location to place inventory closer to where customers live.

“Almost half of our warehouse transfers between Italy and Spain are now transported by sea. By moving these products by sea, instead of via road by trucks, we can significantly reduce our carbon footprint on these routes. In 2022, Amazon will transfer thousands of truckloads between its buildings by sea in Europe, saving thousands of tons of CO emissions,” says Helder Velho, EU Vice President of Surface Transportation. “Sea routes provide a more efficient, less carbon intensive, and, in some cases faster mode of freight transport in comparison to other alternatives.”

Broader selection and faster deliveries for our European customers thanks to Amazon Sea

As we navigate towards our goal of becoming a net zero carbon business by 2040, we are partnering with European carriers like the Grimaldi Group, who lead in more sustainable waterborne transportation by using hybrid eco-friendly vessels.

“Operating with sustainability in mind is a strategic priority for the Grimaldi Group. In recent years, Grimaldi Group has commissioned the construction of new more environmentally friendly vessels and most of our existing vessels have undergone conversions to reduce their environmental impact” points out Francesco Satariano, Executive Key Account Manager Short Sea Lines from Grimaldi Group. “We were one of the pioneers in the industry who started installing innovative equipment on vessels that allows us to switch off engines as we approach ports with the goal of “zero emissions in port”. We were also one of the first to order and receive ammonia ready vessels. We believe in long term partnership with Amazon as we share the mutual commitment to reduce the environmental impact and simultaneously offer more value to customers.”

Amazon has been using sea routes to move inventory between its European buildings since 2019. In Southern Europe, Amazon initially launched two routes to serve customers in Sardinia and Sicily. Since then, Amazon has launched multiple sea routes connecting Italy to Spain and is operating more than 170 sea routes across Europe. At Amazon, we are constantly innovating and looking into alternative modes of transportation when it comes to both parcel delivery and warehouse transfers within our network.