Jeff Bezos is Stepping Down as Amazon C.E.O.

Photo: Getty Images via Zimbio.com

Photo: Getty Images via Zimbio.com

CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, 57, on Tuesday said his run at the top of Amazon was over.

According to The New York Times, Mr. Bezos said he planned to hand over the reins this summer and transition into the role of executive chairman. Andy Jassy, 53, the chief executive of Amazon’s cloud computing division, will be promoted to run the entire company. The change will be effective in the third quarter, which starts in July.

Bezos founded Amazon in 1994 -an online bookseller which he has built into a $1.7 trillion empire that sold so many different items online it became known as “the everything store.” In the process, he upended the retail industry, turned Amazon into a logistics giant, and expanded into cloud computing, streaming entertainment and artificial intelligence-powered devices. For a time, he was the world’s richest person.

In recent years, Mr. Bezos had stepped back from much of Amazon’s day-to-day business, delegating those responsibilities to two main deputies, including Mr. Jassy. He instead had focused on Amazon’s future and on personal projects. In 2013, he bought The Washington Post, and has said he spends more than $1 billion a year on Blue Origin, his space travel company.

Two years ago, he also got a divorce and became a fixture of tabloids, which gushed over his increasingly visible social life, including on superyachts owned by billionaires like Barry Diller.

But the pandemic pulled Mr. Bezos back into Amazon’s daily operations last spring. As Amazon grappled with a flood of e-commerce demand, labor unrest and supply chain challenges brought on by the coronavirus, Mr. Bezos held daily calls to help make decisions about inventory, talked to government officials and made a much-publicized visit to one of Amazon’s warehouses

While Mr. Bezos is leaving at a high point for Amazon’s business, the company faces multiple challenges. Amazon is under growing scrutiny from lawmakers and regulators around the world over whether it is unfairly wielding its clout.


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