Amazon Prime Air takes flight

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is taking flight with Prime Air, the first in what will be a fleet of planes ready to speed deliveries.

The Boeing 767-300 made a secret night flight this week from New York to Seattle, and will make its public debut at the Boeing Seafair Air Show this Friday, Saturday and Sunday, according to GeekWire.

This plane is the first of a fleet of 40 planes as part of a lease agreement with Ohio-based Air Transport Services Group, or ATSG. There are already 10 planes flying Cargo for Amazon, but this is the first with the Prime Air logo.

This is just another piece of the Amazon Flex delivery system that utilizes a variety of transportation services, including those from UPS and FedEx, to create a more robust supply chain.

The planes will carry cargo from distribution centers to trucks, before trekking the last mile to customers' homes.

"We're doing this because of customers, and on behalf of customers," said Dave Clark, Amazon's senior VP of worldwide operations.

"Once you have a capability, you have options to build new products and services off it," Clark told GeekWire. "So I think certainly once we have all 40 of these planes deployed, there's the opportunity to create new connections for customers. Inventory that might not have been available next day suddenly could be available next day for customers. But really, it's all about building core capacity for our Prime service for customers."

Improving the supply chain and speeding delivery has long been a priority for Amazon. From testing drones to private airplanes and leveraging ride share programs in urban areas, this is just one more way Amazon is making itself even more indispensable to customers.

For more:
- see this GeekWire story

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