Jeff Bezos

Jeff Bezos is the man behind Amazon, one of the most successful and well-known companies of all time. We profile the man and tell the story of how he founded the global giant

Sub-editor: Martin Cloake Profile: Jeff Bezos                                 

Jeff Bezos is preparing to give up the reins at Amazon, the company he founded in 1994 after leaving a career in investment banking.

Jeff Bezos profile

Jeff Bezos - early life

Bezos was born Jeffrey Preston Jorgensen in Albuquerque on 12 January 1964. He was raised in Houston and after his parents divorced he moved with his mother to Miami.

His mother remarried Miguel “Mike” Bezos and Jeff took his surname when he was four years old.

While at high school he started his first business, a summer camp called Dream School for children in the 4th, 5th, and 6th grade.

Bezos graduated from Princeton University with a degree in electrical engineering and computer science in 1986. 

After graduating he worked on Wall Street from 1986 to 1994. He became one of the youngest vice presidents of the investment and technology development firm D.E Shaw.

He wrote the business plan for Amazon during a drive from New York City to Seattle.

AMZN price history

Date Close Change Change(%) Open High Low
Oct 22, 2021 3331.85 -74.43 -2.19% 3406.28 3432.28 3327.36
Oct 21, 2021 3417.29 16.08 0.47% 3401.21 3437.20 3397.29
Oct 20, 2021 3405.29 7.12 0.21% 3398.17 3457.72 3397.40
Oct 19, 2021 3444.26 2.00 0.06% 3442.26 3452.26 3418.75
Oct 18, 2021 3441.76 55.46 1.64% 3386.30 3446.23 3377.31
Oct 15, 2021 3406.79 104.43 3.16% 3302.36 3408.26 3297.23
Oct 14, 2021 3300.48 3.68 0.11% 3296.80 3310.37 3287.61
Oct 13, 2021 3287.39 37.99 1.17% 3249.40 3288.49 3247.41
Oct 12, 2021 3237.42 10.48 0.32% 3226.94 3264.64 3226.93
Oct 11, 2021 3237.43 -29.97 -0.92% 3267.40 3289.79 3233.43
Oct 8, 2021 3285.89 -4.89 -0.15% 3290.78 3319.60 3278.51
Oct 7, 2021 3301.38 16.54 0.50% 3284.84 3322.96 3280.45
Oct 6, 2021 3267.42 91.95 2.90% 3175.47 3278.60 3171.87
Oct 5, 2021 3213.44 26.86 0.84% 3186.58 3257.97 3184.30
Oct 4, 2021 3189.26 -58.15 -1.79% 3247.41 3278.89 3173.58
Oct 1, 2021 3279.38 24.90 0.77% 3254.48 3305.11 3246.41
Sep 30, 2021 3286.04 -35.32 -1.06% 3321.36 3324.79 3271.00
Sep 29, 2021 3306.37 -28.98 -0.87% 3335.35 3348.64 3294.38
Sep 28, 2021 3317.36 -29.97 -0.90% 3347.33 3366.75 3287.49
Sep 27, 2021 3394.80 -29.48 -0.86% 3424.28 3424.28 3336.35

Jeff Bezos career timeline

1990 - Shortly after graduating from Princeton University, Bezos became the youngest senior vice president at the investment firm D.E Shaw. There he met his wife MacKenzie Tuttle, whom he married in 1993 and divorced in 2019.

1994 - Bezos quit his job at D.E. Shaw to open an online bookstore, Amazon. The company’s first office was located in a rented garage in Seattle, with few employees. However, within months its sales rocketed to $20,000 a week.

1997 - Amazon went public. The company at this point had 256 employees. Before the IPO Amazon’s quarterly revenue was $16m.

2005 - Bezos and his team started the development of  Amazon Prime, one of the first paid subscription services that offered a wide range of privileges to its customers. Its video, music, reading and other services  now have more than 100 million subscribers worldwide.

2007 - The company released its pocket book Kindle, an e-reader that has seen more than 10 iterations since its launch. The Kindle Store contains more than six million e-books. 

2017 - Bezos surpassed Microsoft’s Bill Gates as the richest person in the world. 

2018 - Bezos became the ‘richest man in modern history and the first centibillionaire on the Forbes wealth index after his net worth increased to $150bn.

2019 - In July 2019, Bezos had a net worth of more than $115.5bn despite his divorce from MacKenzie Tuttle, who eventually received a 4% share  of Amazon. 

2020 -  During the COVID-19 pandemic, Bezos's wealth grew by approximately $24bn.

2021 -  Jeff Bezos announced he is to step down as CEO of Amazon at some point in the third quarter of 2021, and transition into the role of executive chairman. He is estimated to earn about $150,000 every minute.

About Jeff Bezos

Interesting facts about the founder of Amazon:

  • Bezos made around $321m per day or $3,715 per second in early 2021.

  • Bezos himself thinks that the most important job he’s doing is running a space company called Blue Origin, that has recently presented its moon lander. Recently, he sold $1.9bn of Amazon shares to fund Blue Origin.

  • The Amazon CEO owns The Washington Post, one of the oldest newspapers in the US, which he acquired in 2013 for $250m. 

  • Bezos admits he still reads almost all customer complaints he receives via his mail jeff@amazon.com. Although he doesn’t answer them any more, he forwards the messages to his execs with the only comment:“?”

  • Despite the fact that he owns a huge empire, one of the most important rules for Bezos is to sleep eight hours each day in order to have a better mood and be able to make quality decisions.

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