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The founder and CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, is set to step down from his post as CEO in the third quarter of the year.
In a letter sent to employees on Tuesday, Amazon announced that Andy Jassy will replace Jeff Bezos as CEO while Bezos will transition to the executive chair of Amazon’s board.
‘I’m excited to announce that this Q3 I’ll transition to Executive Chair of the Amazon Board and Andy Jassy will become CEO,’ Bezos said in a letter to employees.
‘In the Exec Chair role, I intend to focus my energies and attention on new products and early initiatives. Andy is well known inside the company and has been at Amazon almost as long as I have. He will be an outstanding leader, and he has my full confidence.’
Bezos founded Amazon in 1994 and since then has morphed it from an online bookstore into a mega online retailer that sells and delivers all sorts of products all over the world. In January of last year, Amazon surpassed a $1 trillion market cap under Bezos’ leadership.
Jassy joined Amazon in 1997 and has led Amazon’s Web Services cloud team since its inception.
The transition arrives at a time when Amazon seems unstoppable, fueled by record sales amid the pandemic and generating massive cash and profits from the cloud services business Jassy helped create and manage. Bezos isn’t going far, much the way Bill Gates remained chairman of Microsoft after ceding the CEO role.
‘When you look at our financial results, what you’re actually seeing are the long-run cumulative results of invention,’ Bezos said in a statement.
‘Right now I see Amazon at its most inventive ever, making it an optimal time for this transition.’
The reaction on Wall Street was mostly positive, even as Amazon turned in another blockbuster quarter and solid guidance.
The online retailer reported fourth-quarter sales jumped 44% to $125.6 billion, beating analysts’ average estimate of $119.7 billion. Earnings were $14.09 per share, compared with analyst projections of $7.34.
AFRICA TODAY NEWS, NEW YORK