Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, Amazon said it would temporarily not require sellers to repay loans it had made to them, as merchants confront the prospect of declining sales.
Amazon’s programme, Amazon Lending would pause repayments beginning Thursday until April 30 and without any interest accrue during this period.This news by Amazon is a huge relief during such times.
The programme has offered sums between $1,000 (846.5 pounds) and $750,000 to merchants looking for capital to acquire inventory, expand their product lines and advertise on Amazon.
Amazon said, "Loan repayments will restart on May 1, 2020 ... You will have the same number of remaining payments once repayment resumes.”
As an effect of quarantine, as Americans turn to online shopping, many online sellers, who are small and medium-sized businesses, are facing cash flow constraints amid supply chain and logistics issues caused by the outbreak.
At such times, this decision of Amazon may provide some relief to sellers, some of whom could be hard hit by Amazon's recent decision to restrict its U.S. and European fulfilment services to household, medical and other essential goods during the outbreak.
Merchants of popular items from toys to apparel worry that the temporary ban on stocking goods in Amazon warehouses, on which they depend for delivery, would mean low sales and difficulty paying back loans.
Amazon, which had won customers by continually making shipping faster over the years, has now slowed delivery to weeks in some cases to manage a flood of orders. This could also dampen its sales as shoppers now look for alternative shopping platforms.