Online fashion seller Stitch Fix is concerned about Amazon as it marches towards an IPO. But not because of Amazon's e-commerce dominance.
Stitch Fix, which sends personalized boxes of apparel -- or Fixes -- to its customers, outsources much of its technology infrastructure to Amazon Web Services. When there's an outage or slowdown, Stitch Fix's business and financial results can suffer.
That's not a hypothetical scenario. In its IPO prospectus filed on Thursday, Stitch Fix said an AWS outage in February caused "disruptions in applications that support our warehouse operations and order fulfillment that caused a temporary slowdown in the number of Fix shipments we were able to make."
It's a familiar conundrum across the retail space. Retailers view Amazon as both their greatest existential threat and one of their biggest technology suppliers, with the most sophisticated cloud infrastructure on the planet. Brands that use AWS include Brooks Brothers, Nordstrom, Nike, Under Armour and Lululemon. CNBC reported in August that Target is moving away from AWS amid growing competition with Amazon's core retail operation.