Why is Walmart Dumping Kindle?

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Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT) will stop selling Amazon’s (NASDAQ:AMZN) Kindle line of products at its Walmart stores soon, mirroring rival Target’s (NYSE:TGT) decision last month to drop the online retailer’s electronic devices. A Wal-Mart spokeswoman confirmed the company’s decision to Reuters, which had earlier received information of an internal Wal-Mart memo notifying employees of the same. Amazon unveiled a refreshed line of Kindle e-readers and four Kindle Fire HD tablets earlier this month.

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“We have recently made the business decision to not carry Amazon tablets and eReaders beyond our existing inventory and purchase commitments,” Wal-Mart said in a memo targeted at store managers. “This includes all Amazon Kindle models current and recently announced.”

Wal-Mart said it would continue to sell a variety of tablets, presumably including Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad and Barnes & Noble’s (NYSE:BKS) Nook line. “Our customers trust us to provide a broad assortment of products at everyday low prices, and we approach every merchandising decision through this lens,” Wal-Mart said in a statement sent to media organizations later. “We will continue to offer our customers a broad assortment of tablets, eReaders and accessories at a variety of great price points.”

The decision on Amazon was reportedly taken as part of the overall merchandising strategy. With Wal-Mart looking to build up its online business, Amazon is its biggest competitor. And consumers who buy Kindle tablets use those devices to shop for more than just digital books.

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