It has been announced that the founding billionaire of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, will be stepping down as Chief Executive. 

Jeff Bezos, who was the richest man in the world until he was overtaken by Elon Musk, announced the news yesterday (February 2).

Bezos reportedly wants more time to focus on other projects, including space exploration, as well as focusing on his ownership of The Washington Post. 

Although he is stepping down as Chief Executive, he is not leaving Amazon for good. Bezos will now take the lesser position of executive chair. 

Replacing his title as CEO of Amazon will be Andy Jassy.

Jassy is already CEO of Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS is one of Amazon’s most fruitful businesses, and it has accounted for ten percent of sales in the last quarter and fifty-two percent of Amazon’s profits.

The Announcement

In a letter that was sent to Amazon employees, Bezos wrote: 

“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 has been at the forefront of Amazon for 27 years, having founded the company in 1994 as an online bookseller. 

Bezos has grown the company hugely since then,  turning it into one of the largest companies in the world, with over 1.1 million employees.

In his letter to Amazon employees, Bezos continued: 

“Today, we employ 1.3 million talented, dedicated people, serve hundreds of millions of customers and businesses, and are widely recognized as one of the most successful companies in the world,” 

“Invention is the root of our success. We’ve done crazy things together, and then made them normal.

“We pioneered customer reviews, 1-Click, personalized recommendations, Prime’s insanely-fast shipping, Just Walk Out shopping, the Climate Pledge, Kindle, Alexa, marketplace, infrastructure cloud computing, Career Choice, and much more.

“If you get it right, a few years after a surprising invention, the new thing has become normal. People yawn. And that yawn is the greatest compliment an inventor can receive.

“I don’t know of another company with an invention track record as good as Amazon’s, and I believe we are at our most inventive right now.

“I hope you are as proud of our inventiveness as I am. I think you should be.”

Speaking about his excitement for the future, Bezos said: 

“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.”

Image via Alamy