Amazon buys Texas-based Whole Foods in $13.7 billion deal

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NEW YORK (AP) Online juggernaut Amazon is buying Whole Foods in a deal valued at about $13.7 billion, including debt.

Amazon.com Inc. will pay $42 per share for Whole Foods Market Inc.

That marks an 18 percent premium to Whole Foods closing price on Thursday.

The first Whole Foods Market opened in 1980 in Austin with a staff of 19.

“This partnership presents an opportunity to maximize value for Whole Foods Market’s shareholders, while at the same time extending our mission and bringing the highest quality, experience, convenience and innovation to our customers,” said John Mackey, the company's co-founder and CEO.

The deal comes a month after Whole Foods announced a board shake-up and cost-cutting plan amid falling sales.

The grocery store operator was also under pressure from activist investor Jana Partners.