Amazon founder Jeff Bezos on February 2, 2021 said that he would stand aside later this year as chief executive of the Amazon Company.

Bezos said he will transition to the role of executive chair in the third quarter, handing over the CEO role to Andy Jassy who heads Amazon Web Services.

“He will be an outstanding leader, and he has my full confidence,” Bezos said of Jassy.

Andy Jessy joined Amazon as a marketing manager in 1997 and in 2003 founded AWS, the cloud services division of the company which has been one of the most profitable but least-known units of the tech giant.

In a letter to Amazon employees, Bezos said he would stay engaged in important Amazon initiatives but would pivot towards philanthropic initiatives, including his Day One Fund and Bezos Earth Fund, and other business ventures in space exploration and journalism.

The news came as Amazon reported a blowout holiday quarter with profits more than doubling to USD7.2 billion and revenue jumping 44 per cent to USD125.6 billion.

Amazon’s market value was some USD1.69 trillion as of Tuesday, a tenfold increase from a decade ago, making it one of the world’s most valuable.

Bezos’s stake gives him a personal fortune worth an estimated USD196 billion, slightly more than Tesla chief Elon Musk who had briefly captured the title of world’s wealthiest person.

The 57 year-old world’s richest person based on his Amazon stake, is the founder of Amazon which he built from a startup into one of the world’s most valuable firms.

Jeff Bezos founded Amazon in his garage in 1994 and went on to grow it into a colossus that dominates online retail, with operations in streaming music and television, groceries, cloud computing, robotics, artificial intelligence and more. His other businesses include The Washington Post newspaper and the private space firm Blue Origin.

The company is based in Seattle, Washington, and is developing a second headquarters outside the US capital.

Amazon Company employs more than one million people worldwide including 800,000 in the United States.

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