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How Amazon grew from a garage bookstore to trillion-dollar company under Jeff Bezos

How Amazon grew from a garage bookstore to trillion-dollar company under Jeff Bezos

In the 27 years since he founded Amazon, the company has become synonymous with online shopping, has started operations in cloud computing, groceries, artificial intelligence, streaming media, grown to a company with $1.7 trillion market cap, and become one of the most influential companies in the world

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to step down today Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to step down today

Jeff Bezos, who founded Amazon, is set to hand over the reins of the company to Andy Jassy, currently serving as the chief of Amazon web services. Bezos, 57, started the company as a modest online bookstore and has not only transformed the company into a trillion-dollar conglomerate but has also taken it into newer innovative territories. He is also the force behind suborbital spaceflight services company Blue Origin. Shortly after he steps down on July 5, Bezos is scheduled to take a trip to space on July 20.

In the 27 years since he founded Amazon, the company has become synonymous with online shopping, has started operations in cloud computing, groceries, artificial intelligence, streaming media, grown to a company with $1.7 trillion market cap, and become one of the most influential companies in the world.

Amazon’s growth also helped Jeff Bezos amass a fortune of around $200 billion, even after he had to give away part of his stake to ex-wife MacKenzie Scott.

But as Bezos is set to step down, his vision for the company stays intact. In his parting letter as chief executive, Bezos laid out a new goal for the company -- to be ‘Earth's best employer and Earth's safest place to work’.

FROM GARAGE TO SPACE

Bezos had said in an interview to CNBC that when he started Amazon, he delivered packages himself. “What’s actually happened over the last 25 years is way beyond my expectations. I was delivering the packages myself, we were selling books. I was hoping to build a company, but not the company you see today,” he had said.

In 1994, Amazon.com started as an online bookstore that operated from a garage at his residence in Bellevue, Washington, where Bezos and a few employees started developing the software for the site. The test site was launched in 1995 and they soon expanded to a two-room house. The site met with phenomenal response. Within 30 days, the company started shipping across the US as well as 45 other countries. 

Amazon soon included other products such as electronics, software, apparel, furniture, toys, and jewellery etc. The company from thereon grew by leaps and bounds.

In 2015, Amazon surpassed Walmart as the most valuable retailer in the US. It had first touched a trillion-dollar m-cap in 2018, becoming the second US company, after Apple Inc, to achieve the milestone.

Amazon forayed into a range of segments and rolled out products and services such as Amazon Prime Video, Alexa, Echo, Kindle, Fire TV, Amazon Studios, Amazon Fresh, Amazon Music etc.

In 2000, Bezos founded Blue Origin, aerospace manufacturing and suborbital spaceflight services. Jeff Bezos is scheduled to travel to space aboard Blue Origin’s New Shepard launch vehicle on July 20. He will be accompanied by his brother Mark, pilot Wally Funk and an unidentified person who pumped $28 million to join the suborbital trip.

Also read: Jeff Bezos set to exit Amazon, What's next for tech billionaire? His Instagram gives a hint