Jeff Bezos to Step Down as Amazon CEO

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The lofty position will be filled by Andy Jassy.

Since the founding of Amazon in 1995, its founder and longtime CEO Jeff Bezos has become one of the wealthiest people in the entire world, with a net worth fluctuating between several hundred billion and a hair shy of a trillion. Bezos’ own wealth has arisen from the nonstop, Earth-shattering success of Amazon as a company, the current value of which is estimated to be approximately $1.7 trillion. Yesterday, Amazon held its fourth-quarter earnings report, and unsurprisingly, they’ve smashed expectations once again, posting quarterly sales of $125.6 billion, a 44% boost over the same time last year, likely due to the increase in online shopping brought about by the pandemic. However, alongside this report came a surprising bit of news from Bezos himself.

During the earnings report, Bezos announced that he would be formally stepping down from the lauded role of Chief Executive Officer of Amazon later this year, in favor of a slightly lesser role as Amazon’s executive chair. In Bezos’ place will be Andy Jassy, the current CEO of Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud storage business and one of its biggest moneymakers.

“This journey began some 27 years ago. Amazon was only an idea, and it had no name,” Bezos reminisced in a letter to employees. “The question I was asked most frequently at that time was, ‘What’s the internet?’ … Today, we employ 1.3 million talented, dedicated people, serve hundreds of millions of customers and businesses, and are widely recognized as one of the most successful companies in the world.”

“Being the CEO of Amazon is a deep responsibility, and it’s consuming,” Bezos continued. “When you have a responsibility like that, it’s hard to put attention on anything else. As Exec Chair I will stay engaged in important Amazon initiatives but also have the time and energy I need to focus on the Day 1 Fund, the Bezos Earth Fund, Blue Origin, The Washington Post, and my other passions. I’ve never had more energy, and this isn’t about retiring. I’m super passionate about the impact I think these organizations can have.”

Bezos concluded by saying that Jassy “will be an outstanding leader, and he has my full confidence.”

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8 months ago
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