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Amazon’s quarterly profit jumps to $7.8 billion.

  • July 30, 2021

Shares of Amazon’s stock were down more than 7 percent in aftermarket trading, as investors had expected sales to be even higher and the outlook for the next quarter to be rosier. Amazon is valued at about $1.8 trillion, more than twice its value before the pandemic.

Amazon’s profit beat investor expectations as its most profitable businesses continued to flourish. Its cloud-computing division is now larger than most companies — Morgan Stanley estimates it is worth $600 billion — and growth continues to be strong. Sales in cloud computing rose 37 percent, to $14.8 billion. Its “other” business segment, which is primarily its advertising business, grew 87 percent to $7.9 billion. And within its consumer business, Amazon’s revenue from fees it charges marketplace sellers totaled $25 billion.

Subscriptions, largely Prime memberships, brought in $7.9 billion. About 200 million people are now Prime members, and a recent analysis from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners found they shop at Amazon 27 times a year on average, almost twice as frequently as customers who are not Prime members.

Amid a building boom to expand its fulfillment and delivery network, the company added another 64,000 workers in the past three months and now employs more than 1.3 million people — 52 percent more than this time last year. In the competitive labor market, Amazon has raised wages, which Mr. Olsavsky called “one of the bigger elements of inflation in our business right now.” He said the company expected to open many new facilities in the coming months as it heads into the holiday shopping season.

Comparing Amazon’s performance with last year’s is somewhat challenging this quarter. Last year, the company had an enormous surge in sales after it adjusted its staffing and other parts of its business to better meet the pandemic-fueled demand. But also this year, Amazon’s Prime Day deals event fell in June instead of October, giving another boost to revenue this quarter. J.P. Morgan estimated this year’s event generated about $8.4 billion in sales.

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