Amazon founder Jeff Bezos will resign as chief executive officer of the e-commerce giant later this year, the company announced in a letter to its employees on Tuesday, February 2. Andy Jassy, who leads the company’s cloud business – Amazon Web Services, will take over the CEO role, while Bezos will become executive chairman. The transition will take place in the second half of 2021.
Bezos, 57, said he intends to focus his “energies and attention on new products and early initiatives” in the executive chair role.
Jeff Bezos founded Amazon in 1994 and has served as its CEO since then. The venture which started as an online bookstore is now one of the biggest companies in the world with a market cap of whopping $1.7 trillion. Bezos is currently the richest man in the world with a net worth of $196.2 billion, according to Forbes, just around $8 billion above the second richest person – Elon Musk.
“This journey began some 27 years ago. Amazon was only an idea, and it had no name. The question I was asked most frequently at that time was, ‘What’s the internet?’ Blessedly, I haven’t had to explain that in a long while,” Bezos wrote in the letter.
“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.”
The Amazon boss who is stepping down as CEO and will act as executive chair of the firm revealed his future intentions and plans.
“As Exec Chair I will stay engaged in important Amazon initiatives but also have the time and energy I need to focus on the Day 1 Fund, the Bezos Earth Fund, Blue Origin, The Washington Post, and my other passions,” he said.
Furthermore, he added, “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.”
Andy Jassy, who has been working at Amazon since 1997, is stepping up to the chief executive role. Bezos believes the new CEO will be an excellent fit for the job.
“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,” he said.