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Jeff Bezos announces decision to step down as Amazon CEO

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Jeff Bezos will be stepping down as Amazon’s CEO, according to an official announcement released Tuesday by the company.

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Amazon Web Services CEO Andy Jassy will step in to run things beginning in the third quarter of 2021, with Bezos transitioning to executive chair of Amazon’s board. Jassy has been with Amazon since 1997, leading its cloud services division throughout his entire tenure. He joined the Seattle Kraken ownership group as part of the NHL team’s inception.

Bezos expressed “full confidence” in Jassy as his successor Tuesday, stating that he “will be an outstanding leader” in the years to come.

A letter addressed to the company’s employees from Bezos further detailed his reasoning, saying that he intends to focus his attention “on new products and early initiatives.”

Bezos founded Amazon in Bellevue in 1994, having shepherded the company from its early days as a digital bookstore to its present-day status as an online retail, grocery, and multimedia giant.

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The full public statement from Bezos announcing his decision to step down as CEO reads as follows:

Amazon is what it is because of invention. We do crazy things together and then make them normal. We pioneered customer reviews, 1-Click, personalized recommendations, Prime’s insanely-fast shipping, Just Walk Out shopping, the Climate Pledge, Kindle, Alexa, marketplace, infrastructure cloud computing, Career Choice, and much more. If you do it right, a few years after a surprising invention, the new thing has become normal. People yawn. That yawn is the greatest compliment an inventor can receive. 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.

This comes in the wake of Amazon recording its most ever revenue in a single quarter, having brought in $125.56 billion in the latter months of 2020.

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