Bye Bye Jeff Bezos

Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s world boss and one of the richest people to ever live to date has retired from Amazon on Monday – exactly 27 years after he founded it. This comes at a period where the multi-billion dollar company was counting profits. Bezos who has planning to pursue a space exploration is facing a huge blow over successive terms on his immediate replacement to his one-time protégé, cloud-computing boss Andy Jassy.

According to a report by CNBC, Amazon was experiencing a time of great success at the time of Bezos retirement. In February this year, the multi-billion franchise registered a peak profit, surpassing $100 billion in quarterly sales for the first time.

However, succession storm still rocks Amazon as Andy Jassy appointed by Bezos to take over the chief executive mantle faces headache over so many claims the company has had in the recent days, some of which are more intense than before.

Amazon is being probed by antitrust regulators in the U.S. and abroad. It faces pressure from lawmakers who say it should focus on being a better corporate citizen. Inside the company, employees routinely express grievances about working conditions and, on the front lines, have met with labor unions to explore the possibility of organizing.

According to experts Andy Jassy won’t be strong enough to calm the huge storm the company has had to face. Many employees used to see Bezos at Amazon as that leader with relentless drive and energy that would propel Amazon’s meteoric rise from an internet bookseller to the world’s largest online retailer and cloud computing company.

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On the other hand, Jassy also served as Bezos’ “shadow” in the early 2000s. Shadows act as a “brain double” for Bezos, offering another set of eyes and ears in meetings, an advantage that elevates his immediacy into the top most position.

Bezos can be opinionated, energetic and, at times, aggressive, people who’ve worked closely with the CEO said. Jassy often possesses a more mellow air, but can be just as intense, recalling specific details from presentations and pointing out discrepancies with a laser-like focus.

“People would say, for example, my 23-person team, he’s met with me like every other week for two months,” said David Anderson, a former manager in Amazon’s AWS and device units to CNBC media. “So every once in a while, it was almost like this giant hammer comes in and smashes this problem out of the way because Jeff gets involved.”

“I want to especially thank Andy Jassy for agreeing to take on the CEO role,” Bezos expressed in his final letter to Amazon shareholders back in late April.

“It’s a hard job with a lot of responsibility. Andy is brilliant and has the highest of high standards. I guarantee you that Andy won’t let the universe make us typical. He will muster the energy needed to keep alive in us what makes us special. That won’t be easy, but it is critical.”

The business mogul who has been described many Kenyan front line business people especially the MSMEs as a face to reckon, has impacted positively to the drive of most upcoming franchises.

Having begun Amazon at his garage in Bellevue, Washington, on July 5, 1994, his main aim was to see the transformation of online bookstore selling books that was primarily competing with local booksellers and Barnes & Noble would one day take over the world’s economy, which later won and expanded to selling many products.

The company employs more than one million people worldwide including 800,000 in the United States.

Neil Saunders of the research firm Global Data said Amazon has boosted sales during the pandemic “off the back of its superior logistics network,” but also faces growing competition.

“We maintain our view that Amazon will emerge from the pandemic as a bigger and stronger business,” Saunders said. “We welcome the leadership change, if only because it will allow Jeff Bezos to focus more on innovation and new ideas.”

Mombasa, Kenya.

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