Jim Cramer says the turnaround of Best Buy proves Amazon’s ‘death star days’ are over


CNBC’s Jim Cramer said Tuesday he no longer views ecommerce behemoth Amazon as a so-called “death star” capable of running roughshod over big box retailers in categories from pharmacy to electronics.

“Amazon’s death star days, they’re done,” the “Mad Money” host said. “The remaining brick-and-mortar retailers have their force fields and they’re beaming Amazon’s projectiles right back at the once invincible digital retailer. I still like the company and the stock, but it’s no longer laying waste to the entire industry as it used to.”

Cramer said belief in Amazon’s ability to move into any sector and quickly gain an advantage over incumbents has been waning progressively, due in part to innovations and improvements from the likes of CVS Health, Target and Walmart.

“But if there was any doubt about the end of Amazon’s death star status,” Best Buy put an end to it with its Tuesday earnings report, Cramer said. “This is the most miraculous turnaround story in retail right now.”

Shares of Best Buy popped more than 8% Tuesday as Wall Street cheered the company’s second-quarter results. Sales jumped nearly 20% in the quarter to $11.85 billion, topping analyst estimates of $11.49 billion, according to Refinitiv. Earnings per share of $2.98 easily beat forecasts of $1.85.

Cramer touted Best Buy’s membership program known as Total Tech Support, saying it has “already exceeded expectations … and it’s easy to see why.”

The membership program, which costs $199.99 per year, provides “unlimited support for all your tech and appliances, no matter where you purchased them,” according to Best Buy’s website.

“You probably have an IT department to help you at work in the central office, but what do you have at home? You have nothing to speak of … which is a problem now that so many people work from home,” Cramer said. “Best Buy’s basically replacing corporate tech support for remote workers.”

Best Buy used to be viewed as “merely a showroom for Amazon,” but the company under the leadership of CEO Corie Barry continues to innovate and thrive, Cramer said. Even though shares of Best Buy are up nearly 22% year to date, Cramer said “this stock has more room to run.”

“Until this quarter, though, I always feared with the exception of Walmart and Costco, Amazon could run any of these companies into the ground whenever they felt like it,” Cramer added. “Instead, the former death star is now messing around with brick and mortar, no doubt just to learn about what its competitors already know.”