Today it is one of the world’s largest companies, with multi-billion dollar sales and offices worldwide. This is how the largest e-commerce site we know was born. We needed a firm name. A name that was exotic and mysterious at the same time but was expected and familiar to people’s ears. A name that conveyed a sense of power. A name, above all, that began with A, so it was among the first words in alphabetical order. Jeff Bezos put his vocabulary in his hand and scrolled through it until he was almost halfway through the words that begin with A. There he met the one who would change his life. And it was love at first sight.
Amazon, this is the long-searched word, contains all the characteristics listed above: it is a word known to most, but at the same time, it returns something exotic; it conveys a sense of power and grandeur – it is the name of the largest river in the world – and, above all, it began with A. It may seem strange, but Amazon, the largest e-commerce site in the world, owes its name to this research carried out by its current CEO back in 1994. Back then, Bezos set out to sell books to the whole world. Now it sells just about everything: hardware to software, clothing to food, and fitness equipment to gardening tools. And thanks to the Kindle has allowed the whole world to learn about ebooks. But the beginnings were far from rosy.
The Beginning Of A Dream
Bezos buys a house and establishes Amazon’s headquarters in the garage attached to his home. Given the space available, Amazon initially is nothing more than a small group of people who pack and ship books throughout the United States. And above all, it has a strange development plan. When he is still in New York, Bezos reads an article about the imminent explosion of the e-commerce market and decides that he has to be part of it. He drew up a list of the twenty products that could be sold through a website, and among them, he chose the ones that he thought were the five most promising: CDs, software, hardware, videotapes and books. The choice, initially, falls precisely on the latter.
The First Investors
The development plan drawn up by the founder of Amazon predicts that, in the first five years of activity, the company would not produce profits and would continue to operate at a loss. Someone, however, begins to believe in this idea and invests heavily in the project: the first was Nick Hanauer, who put $ 40,000 into the Amazon project, followed a few months later by Tom Alburg, who wrote a check for $ 100,000. Also, due to the bursting of the “Internet bubble”, profits were a couple of years later than expected, but in 2001 Amazon could finally distribute the first dividends to its shareholders.
In July 1995, the Amazon.com site opened and the first book to be sold and shipped was Douglas Hofstadter’s Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought. Already in the first months of activity, Amazon is an incredible success thanks to the combination of a vast catalog and low prices. In short, Amazon had already become a phenomenon of the Net. But all this is not enough for Bezos. A few months after the site was opened, users could leave their opinion on the books they bought. From a simple e-commerce site, Amazon is transformed into a real community where users make their knowledge available to help make possible purchases.
The Landing On The Stock Exchange
In 1997 Amazon decided to expand its business and land on the stock exchange: CDs and films were added to the catalog, followed the following year by software, consumer electronics, video games, toys and household tools. 1998 is also the year of the ocean crossing. In the meantime, Amazon also started selling outside the US borders and opened offices in the UK and Germany.
The following year Bezos was awarded the title of Man by Time magazine of the year for its merits in the global diffusion of e-commerce. The first years of the new millennium are rather turbulent. Within months, Bezos was forced to lay off nearly 1,000 employees, and Amazon is on the verge of bankruptcy. The founder and CEO of the company decided not to give up and to continue his adventure. Little by little, Amazon recovers and returns to grow at incredible rates, further expanding its catalog by grinding profit after profit.
The Launch Of The First Ebook Reader: The Birth Of The Kindle
Kindle that Amazon can also establish itself as a manufacturer of technological products. The Kindle is a parallelepiped of plastic with a 6-inch screen at 16 shades of gray that allows you to read the ebooks sold on the Amazon store comfortably. It is the first version of the Kindle. Since then, the world of reading has never been the same, thanks to the brilliant invention of the Amazon laboratories. Over the years, the ebook reader has undergone several changes, up to the development of a low-cost tablet that offers users many exciting features.
The Home Assistant Echo
After revolutionizing the world of reading with the launch of the Kindle, Jeff Bezos has decided to win another challenge by producing and developing Echo, a speaker with a microphone, which, thanks to artificial intelligence called Alexa, can act as a home and personal assistant. . The small device in Italy did not have the success it deserved. Still, the suitable number of sales it had in the United States convinced Amazon to launch two new updated versions with even more features in 2016.
Amazon Prime is a service that has revolutionized the e-commerce market: a challenge launched by Jeff Bezos to the leading competitors and which has been fully won. One of the main flaws when buying online is the shipping time: three or four days for the product to arrive home. Amazon Prime has cut delivery times by guaranteeing shipping in one day. To use the service, paying an annual subscription of 19.99 euros is necessary. In big cities, the company is testing a new service ( Amazon Prime Now ) that guarantees delivery within two hours of purchase.