History and Background
The company Amazon was founded in 1994 by Jeff Bezos. It was a company that changed the way companies sell products by being the first company to sell their products online; Which has now become a common practice for businesses across the United States. Although unlike the Amazon of today, it was originally nothing more than an online bookstore. The original headquarters of Amazon could not be more synonymous with the stereotype of a company chasing the American dream, inside of a garage. Interesting enough, the servers required to run Amazon used up so much power that Jeff Bezos could not use the vacuum in his home without causing his electricity to short-circuit. The first funding that Bezos received for Amazon was in the amount of forty thousand. Considering how large Amazon has become it is inspiring that the first investment is not an amount beyond the reach of most businessmen. The first investment was followed by a second slightly larger initial investment of 100k. With how large Amazon has become you may have think this was a small investment. However, like many other American companies it started from humble beginnings and achieved great heights.
Within the first month of operation, Amazon fulfilled orders in every state within the United States and 48 countries. An incredible accomplishment for any companies first month; Which foreshadowed the economic powerhouse that Amazon was destined to become. When they first started to make sales, they had a bell that went off with every sale but before long had to get rid of the bell because it never stopped going off. If they still had a bell like that hooked up it would be ringing perpetually for eternity. It was not very long before Amazon decided it was time to diversify their product selection. In 1997, the same year that Amazon went public they added movies and music to their selection of products. Which was a big success and positive incentive for Amazon to begin selling many more products. Comparing the website with the addition of book and music to what it was before it seemed as if it was a huge up scale. Nevertheless, this expansion of available goods was still nothing compared to how diversified Amazons product section is now.
When amazon first went public their Initial Public Offering (IPO) was $18 but by the end of the first day it had already reached an IPO of $29. Over the years Amazon has tried to expand into other business markets. One of these was an auction site that was meant to compete with eBay but this was unable to compete and failed. Another one of their side business ventures was a service that took pictures of local businesses such as restaurants that consumers could use as a reference when deciding where to go. However, this was abandoned in 2007. This idea was taken up a year later in 2008 by Google maps. Who took it to the next level and took pictures of virtually every part of different communities.
Jeff Bezos originally wanted to name his company “Cadabra” because he wanted the site to have a magical feeling surrounding it, but his agent talked him out of it because he thought it would be too difficult to understand over the phone. This lead to Bezos settling on the name of Amazon. Another company name that was considered before Amazon was “Relentless”, in fact if you go to www.relentless.com to this day you will be redirected to www.Amazon.com.
In the present day, Amazon is a Fortune 500 company and a grand slam success to say the very least. The company considers itself to be customer obsessed, because they are constantly evaluating customer feedback for ways to further evolve. This approach to their business has benefited them greatly. It is difficult to say by how much considering that they do not have any competing company that provides the same kind of service they do (an all-encompassing online convenience store). But the results speak for themselves in 2004 Amazon had just under seven billion in net sales, as of 2017 that number has shot through the roof to an astounding one hundred and seventy-seven billion in net sales. Amazon essentially has a monopoly over stores that sell products online. Any product that you can think of is likely also found on their website.
- Hartmans, Avery. “15 Fascinating Facts You Probably Didn’t Know about Amazon.” Business Insider, Business Insider, 23 Aug. 2018, www.businessinsider.com/jeff-bezos-amazon-history-facts-2017-4.
- “Understanding Amazon.com’s History and Corporate Culture.” The Balance Careers, The Balance Careers, www.thebalancecareers.com/amazon-com-company-research-2071316.
- Rushton, Cate. “The History of Amazon.com.” Techwalla, Techwalla, www.techwalla.com/articles/the-history-of-amazoncom.