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The Legacy That Jeff Bezos Is Leaving Behind At Amazon by Chuky7(m): 9:26am On Feb 05
Twenty seven years after
starting Amazon out of his
garage and turning it into
one of the world’s most
valuable companies,
founder Jeff Bezos said on
Tuesday he is stepping
down as CEO. Bezos has
been a recurring character
in the pages for Forbes
since the days when he
was a scrappy
entrepreneur in the
crosshairs of Barnes &
Noble to a net worth of
$196 billion.
"A couple of years ago,
people were looking at
Barnes & Noble's plans to
go on-line and calling us
Amazon.toast —and I
thought they had a pretty
good argument!" Bezos
joked to Forbes in 1999.
"But what they didn't
understand is how the
Internet shifts power to
the customer.”
Here’s a retrospective , in
photos, of his path to
becoming the world’s
richest person. Below is a
look back at the pivotal
moments from his tenure,
which set the course for
the company and forever
reshaped the retail
Books were the beginning,
but certainly not the end
Jeff Bezos took on the big
bookstore chains like
Borders and Barnes &
Noble when he started
selling books online in
1994. By the time the
company went public
three years later, it carried
more than 2.5 million
titles and generated
annual sales of $148
million. Its inventory
turned over 42 times that
year, compared to only 2.1
times for Barnes & Noble.
“Amazon.com cannot exist
in the physical world,"
Bezos told Forbes in 1996,
the first year that the
company appeared in the
publication. "No
metropolitan area could
support a million-title
Plus, Bezos didn’t have
any intention at stopping
there. By 1998, Amazon
had begun expanding its
offering to include all
sorts of things, like CDs,
DVDs, clothing, toys and
office products. Bezos also
began to hint at his
outsized ambitions,
dropping the company’s
tagline as the “Earth’s
Biggest Bookstore” and
beginning to describe
Amazon as an online
retailer that would offer
“Earth’s Biggest

Welcoming third-party
In 1999, Amazon invited
third-party sellers to begin
listing merchandise on the
marketplace and compete
directly with the products
that Amazon sold itself.
These sellers (mostly small
and medium-sized
businesses) now form the
backbone of the e-
commerce giant ,
generating roughly 60% of
its product sales today,
double the percentage
they represented a decade

Making two-day shipping the
new normal
In 2005, Bezos introduced
a new loyalty program
called Amazon Prime with
an enticing perk: For $79 a
year, customers could
receive free, two-day
shipping on their orders.
That would quickly shape
customer expectations for
online shopping and send
the rest of the industry
scrambling to compete.
Amazon has remained a
step ahead, thanks to over
100 fulfillment centers
where it packages and
sends out items. It has
also built out its own
transportation fleet that
rivals the post office, with
ShipMatrix recently
estimating that it is
delivering two thirds of its
own packages. In 2019, it
said it would invest
further to bring one-day
shipping to its Prime

Creating a cash cow to fund
the retail business
In 2006, Amazon began
offering cloud computing
services to other
businesses. It had built the
technology to run its own
website and figured
perhaps it could make a
buck hawking it to others.
Called Amazon Web
Services, it quickly
attracted customers from
NASA to Netflix. It has
served as a cash cow for
the company, generating
$35 billion in sales in 2019
and helping offset losses
from the retail business.
“He's taken two very
major industries, and
simultaneously, and sort
of under the nose of
competitors, he's become
in effect the leader and is
redefining them and
succeeding at really big
businesses,” said Warren
Buffett of Bezos’ success in
both the retail and cloud
competing sectors in a
2018 interview
with Forbes .

Getting into physical stores
Amazon made its first big
foray into brick-and-
mortar retail in 2017,
when it announced it was
acquiring Whole Foods for
$13.4 billion. It has since
lowered the prices on
hundreds of products,
plus rolled out special
perks to Prime members,
like free grocery delivery
from all of its stores.

Pioneering automated
Amazon opened its first
Amazon Go store to the
public in 2018, offering
shoppers the ability to
pick up items and leave
without waiting in the
checkout line. Its “Just
Walk Out” technology,
which leverages a
combination of cameras
and artificial intelligence
to automatically track
what items shoppers put
in their carts, has since
been rolled out to more
than two dozen locations.
It is also available to other
retailers; Hudson and OTG
are experimenting with
the technology at a
handful of grab-and-go
stores in the airport.

Becoming the richest person
on the planet along the way
Bezos first appeared on
the Forbes 400 list in 1998
after taking his company
public with a net worth of
$1.6 billion, making him
the 102nd richest person
in the nation and earning
him his first spot on
Forbes ’ cover. Nearly two
decades later, in 2017, he
overtook Bill Gates for the
first time as the richest
person in the world. His
net worth also surpassed
$100 billion that year.
He’s now the richest
person on the planet with
a net worth of $196
billion, thanks to an 11%
stake and a stock that has
continued to defy gravity.
(And this is after giving
ex-wife MacKenzie a
quarter of his shares in
the divorce.) In August
2020, he became the first
person ever to be worth
over $200 billion .


NB: Bezos transitioning from executive to chairman
Re: The Legacy That Jeff Bezos Is Leaving Behind At Amazon by Chuky7(m): 9:27am On Feb 05

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