Amazon has announced plans to delay its Black Friday sales event in France to allow smaller independent retailers struggling during lockdown the chance to compete.
The ecommerce giant, alongside other leading French retailers like Carrefour, will now not launch any Black Friday sales until December 4.
This unprecedented move, made largely in response to increasing pressure from the French government, is designed to give local shopkeepers who remain in a national lockdown a sales boost.
According to the French Ministry, both online and traditional retailers across the country agreed to officially postpone the Black Friday sales event from November 25 until December 2 on the condition stores would reopen on December 1.
France’s non-essential retail stores have been closed since October 30 when fresh restrictions were brought in to help contain the spread of the virus.
“Today, as many other French retailers and following the government’s recommendation, we decided to postpone Black Friday if this enables retailers to reopen before Dec. 1,” Amazon France’s general manager Frederic Duval said in a statement.
While Amazon has made record sales in France during lockdown, it is facing increasing resistance from retail and political opponents who claim it threatens the country’s tradition of mom-and-pop neighbourhood stores.
Amazon has lost market share in France during the pandemic over a heated battle for workers rights, while more than 30,000 people have signed a petition to boycott the retailer.