Jeff Bezos to step down as Amazon chief executive

Ruben Fields
February 3, 2021

Amazon chief technology officer Werner Vogels was among those who praised Jassy, calling him "the absolute best person to lead the company".

Amazon said Tuesday that Jeff Bezos is stepping down as CEO later this year, a role he's had since he founded the company almost 30 years ago.

Bezos also penned an email to Amazon staffers that was published on the company's blog following the announcement.

"I've never had more energy, and this isn't about retiring", Bezos said. "I'm super passionate about the impact I think these organizations can have", he added.

"Andy Jassy for nearly two decades now has focused on the AWS side of Amazon", she said.

Bezos, 57, will be replaced in the summer by Andy Jassy, who runs Amazon's cloud-computing business.

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In a letter to Amazon employees published Tuesday afternoon, Bezos announced he would transition to the executive-chairman role and focus on "new products and early initiatives".

"Right now I see Amazon at its most inventive ever, making it an optimal time for this transition", Bezos said in his statement to Amazon employees.

After stepping further away from day-to-day operations at Amazon, Bezos found himself pulled back in due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the logistical complications that arose as a result, according to the New York Times.

As for the full year, Amazon reported net sales increased 38% to $386.1 billion, more than $6 billion more than analysts had projected.

In 2006, Jassy founded Amazon's AWS, Amazon's cloud service platform used by millions of businesses across the world. It was a title he held onto until January 2021, when Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk passed them. Under Bezos, Amazon also launched the first e-reader that gained mass acceptance, and its Echo listening device made voice assistants a more common sight in many living rooms.

Amazon.com (AMZN) will soon have its first new leader in 27 years.

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