Billionaire Jeff Bezos will step down as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of e-commerce company Amazon later this year, transitioning as Executive Chair in the company’s board, the company announced on Feb. 2.
In a statement addressed to his employees, Bezos wrote that he will make the transition during the third quarter of 2021, handing the CEO post to Andy Jassy, the chief executive of subsidiary Amazon Web Services.
“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 wrote.
Bezos, who founded the company in 1994, said that with the transition, he will have more time to focus on his other interests, but he will remain “engaged” with important Amazon projects.
“Being the CEO of Amazon is a deep responsibility, and it’s consuming. When you have a responsibility like that, it’s hard to put attention on anything else. 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, Blue Origin, The Washington Post, and my other passions,” Bezos, who amassed a fortune of $185 billion, wrote.
The announcement came as Amazon released its financial results, which revealed that the international massive online retailer reached a “record-breaking holiday season” during the last three months of 2020, reporting sales of $125.56 billion.
“When you look at our financial results, what you’re actually seeing are the long-run cumulative results of invention. Right now, I see Amazon at its most inventive ever, making it an optimal time for this transition,” Bezos said.
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