Hearing #2 On Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century
To the FTC: I am a Sales Director for KEEN, one of the largest privately held outdoor and casual footwear brands in the country. I commend you on holding these long overdue hearings on anti-trust law in the 21st century. There is no doubt in my mind that Facebook and Amazon specifically constitute monopolies, and our laws need to be updated to support this notion. Amazon loves to claim they represent less than 1% of total US retail revenue, but in the footwear industry they represent a number, based on my own evidence and my colleagues among over ten major suppliers in the industry, closer to 40%. This frightening consolidation has occurred in less than 10 years, and was driven largely by Amazon's ability to undercut competition through price. They did this by continuing to receive access to capital without generating profit for years, while also avoiding taxation via sales tax and property tax. Now they control the largest pipeline for many manufacturers and retailers to sell their product, while competing with them directly. This doesn't make sense, and the consumer will ultimately lose out.