Does Jeff Bezos Really Want to Squash Shutterfly?

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The world of photography has sure undergone major changes in the past 20 years or so. With the explosion of personal computers and digital cameras in the 1990s, then came phone-based cameras. Now almost all photos are digitally taken, and the company Shutterfly Inc. (NASDAQ: SFLY) has been at the heart of the few winners in this digital migration.

Nothing lasts forever, and now we have word that Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) is encroaching further into Shutterfly’s space for photo printing. The Amazon Prints portal was launched to offer Prime Photos and Amazon Drive customers.

While Shutterfly has faced many other competitors, any move into or further move into an industry or segment by Amazon can spell trouble. Amazon showed that its users will be able to create books of photos and will allow for online photo prints that can be customized with themes, size and paper types.

While this may be a risk for Shutterfly, it may not be a huge win for the mighty Amazon. As a reminder, 2015 was the first year that Shutterfly generated over $1 billion in sales ($1.059 billion). Still that figure was up 15% from the prior year, and the 2015 figure was up by 35% if compared to 2013. Thomson Reuters shows that the consensus analyst estimates call for Shutterfly to generate $1.15 billion in 2016 sales and $1.26 billion in 2017 sales.

So, what would an extra $1 billion or so in revenues really mean to Amazon, assuming that all the revenues even convert over? Amazon generated total 2015 revenues of $107 billion. The consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters are calling for Team Bezos to generate sales of $137 billion in 2016 and $166.6 billion in 2017.

This is one of those instances when something could be a niche business for a large company like Amazon. It would certainly not eliminate the Shutterfly revenues as a whole, and it would not really move the needle for Bezos’s growth ambitions.

Still, any time a large disruptor can come in it can put severe pressure on a company the size of Shutterfly. Amazon’s market cap is now $375 billion or so, versus a mere $1.5 billion for Shutterfly.

Wednesday’s trading session took 12.4% out of Shutterfly’s value. The drop was down $6.28 (or −12.44%) to $44.20, versus a consensus analyst target price of $51.89 and a 52-week trading range of $35.22 to $54.60.

Here is what really stands out: the 5.1 million shares or so that traded by the close on Wednesday was more than 15 times its normal daily volume.