Oct. 5 (UPI) -- Online retail giant Amazon is experimenting with completing its own product deliveries, going outside its longtime partnerships with UPS and FedEx.
The system, being called Seller Flex, enables Amazon-partnered companies to house their own goods, with Amazon completing shipping when an order comes in. The change would permit more third-party items to be sold with the Amazon Prime badge and the web retailer's two-day delivery guarantee, Bloomberg reported. Also, by utilizing its partners to store items it would ease the bottlenecks that have at times plagued Amazon, particularly during the peak holiday shopping season.
Right now, in order to be listed as an Amazon Prime product, third-party retailers have to ship their products to Amazon, which stores them and processes the shipping, usually utilizing UPS or FedEx. By taking over what's referred to as the "final mile" of shipping - the distance between a warehouse and the customer's doorstep -- Amazon is stepping squarely into the territory it has long relied on others to provide.
In the past, both FedEx and UPS have scoffed at the idea Amazon would eventually become less of a partner and more of a competitor. UPS said in 2016 that Amazon lacks the fundamental infrastructure necessary for a broad-scale delivery service. FedEx said business-to-customer deliveries like the kind of service performed on Amazon's behalf is only a small portion of the overall deliveries the company makes.
Both UPS and FedEx saw their stock prices slip by at least 2 percent in early trading Thursday on the news of Amazon's plan.
Bloomberg reported Seattle-based Amazon has been testing out Seller Flex at West Coast delivery centers and plans a nationwide rollout in 2018.