As chief executive of the company he founded from a startup into one of the most successful businesses in the world, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos said Tuesday he will step aside later this year.
Based on his Amazon stake, the world’s wealthiest person, Bezos said he would move to the position of executive chair in the third quarter. He is going to handle the role of CEO to Andy Jassy, who leads Amazon Web Services currently.
The report broke as Amazon posted a blowout holiday quarter with revenues more than doubling to $7.2 billion and revenue rising 44 percent to $125.6 billion—as online sales soared across the world due to pandemic lockdowns.
More About Bezos And His Decision:
Bezos said in a letter to Amazon staff that he will “stay engaged in important Amazon initiatives” but pivot to philanthropic initiatives.
“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 wrote.
“Andy is well known inside the company and has been at Amazon almost as long as I have,” Bezos said in a statement. “He will be an outstanding leader, and he has my full confidence.”
“Right now I see Amazon at its most inventive ever, making it an optimal time for this transition,” he said.
Over the past several years, Bezos’ tenure at Amazon has been characterized by a remarkable performance. It has seen a massive expansion internationally and improvements in profitability and efficiency.
Bezos’s stake gives him an approximate $196 billion worth of personal wealth, marginally more than Elon Musk. Musk temporarily captured the title of the richest person in the world. Although Amazon has been the dominant figure in online commerce, Bezos, with its control and supremacy over the market, has eliminated all criticism.
Last year, he told a congressional hearing that Amazon accounts for less than four percent of United States retail spending and has a “range of retail competitors.”
Neil Saunders of the research firm GlobalData said Amazon has boosted sales during the pandemic “off the back of its superior logistics network,” but also faces growing competition.
“Looking ahead, we maintain our view that Amazon will emerge from the pandemic as a bigger and stronger business,” Saunders said.
“We welcome the leadership change, if only because it will allow Jeff Bezos to focus more on innovation and new ideas, which will provide the fuel to power the engine of future growth.”