Amazing Amazon

Amazon’s stock this last week crossed $300 (from $2 in 1997 when it went public, after splits) and the valuation reached $140B, twice that of Facebook, but lower than Google and Apple. This is indeed amazing.

Amazon started out as a web-based book selling company. Now it has three businesses:

  • Selling new books as well as users can sell their old books.
  • Using its fulfillment engine to sell every other consumer goods.
  • The Amazon Web Services platform for offering cloud based services.

The last item is growing to become its number one business soon. It started monetizing its huge computing infrastructure few years back, first with renting storage (S3).  Then came the Elastic Computing Cloud followed by myriad other cloud services. The AWS platform is the dominant cloud infrastructure, both IaaS and PaaS. It has been innovating new technologies such as REST, Dynamo, etc.

Amazon is a great example of a business constantly re-inventing itself, thanks to its leadership headed by the brilliant Jeff Bezos. Other computing business leaders like IBM and HP have become followers. Amazon even got into the tablet hardware business with Kindle.

Its new foray into video streaming and music expands its market beyond the traditional ones.

Given its growth, soon it will rank much higher in terms of market value.


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