March 4, 2019

Amazon Annual Report Highlights Unauthorized Sales Challenges on Platform


In its Form 10-K Annual Report, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in January, Amazon detailed potential risks to its business. According to published reports, Amazon this year disclosed risks associated with its inability to prevent the sale of “unlawful, counterfeit, pirated, or stolen goods” on the Amazon marketplace.

Amazon cautioned that its platform may contain sellers that are:

  • “selling unlawful, counterfeit, pirated, or stolen goods”
  • “selling goods in an unlawful or unethical manner”
  • “violating the proprietary rights of others,” and
  • violating Amazon’s own policies.

These statements recognize what Vorys eControl has known to be an issue for years, and the reality is that the Amazon third party marketplace will continue to grow exponentially. Indeed in 2018, Amazon generated $141.92 billion in product sales, a 19.7% increase from 2017. Third-party sellers accounted for more than half of Amazon’s sales during its busiest time–Q4. Vorys eControl exists to help prevent the harm to manufacturers and brands caused by unauthorized sellers. As Amazon’s statements make clear – this is something that companies must address head-on.