What happened

Is Amazon (AMZN -1.11%) currently shopping for a big asset overseas?

According to a media report published Monday morning, it is. The company is apparently among several entities mulling a bid for a unit of big German retailer Metro based in India. Although the American company has very deep pockets, this could be a pricey buy. On that thought, investors traded out of Amazon stock, which fell more than 3% in price on the day.

So what

Citing "people familiar with the matter," Bloomberg said that several large companies are vying for the wholesale Indian operations of that German company, Metro. Thailand's Pokphand Group and Indian conglomerate Reliance Industries are two of these suitors, according to the sources. The third is Amazon.

The non-U.S. companies are apparently further along in their quest for the Metro business. Bloomberg said that Pokphand and Reliance have both submitted non-binding offers for the unit. At the moment, according to the article, Amazon is "considering" making a bid.

The report's sources say that the Metro unit could be worth the equivalent of $1 billion to $1.2 billion. It was not clear how much Pokphand and Reliance might be bidding with their offers.

Metro has not yet commented on the report, nor have any of the supposed suitors named in the article -- including Amazon.

Now what

At that kind of price, the Metro unit would be a mere drop in the bucket for Amazon financially -- after all, it had more than $36 billion in cash alone on its books at the end of March.

Still, $1 billion is a big swallow, and investors might be concerned that the cash could be put to better use in other ways. Although the company is a dominant retailer in the U.S. and has a great (and rather stealthy) business unit in Amazon Web Services, both segments are hotly competitive and certain to remain so going forward.