Ama­zon cloud ser­vices drive 15% jump in first-quar­ter sales

The China Post - - BUSINESS INDEX & -

Ama­zon said Thurs­day that strong gains in its mar­ket-lead­ing cloud com­put­ing ser­vices helped drive a 15-per­cent rise in to­tal sales in the first quar­ter.

But the bot­tom line was red for the lead­ing U.S. on­line re­tailer, with a loss of US$57 mil­lion, com­pared to a net gain of US$108 mil­lion a year ago, due to con­tin­ued growth in op­er­at­ing over­head.

To­tal sales jumped to US$22.72 bil­lion in the Jan­uary-March pe­riod, com­pared to US$19.74 bil­lion a year ago.

U.S. sales gains off­set a fall in the com­pany’s in­ter­na­tional di­vi­sion, hit in part by the strong dollar and weaker for­eign cur­ren­cies.

Sales of elec­tron­ics and other mer­chan­dise in North Amer­ica were still the com­pany’s main­stay, up 31 per­cent in the year to US$10.25 bil­lion. In­ter­na­tion­ally, the gain was 4 per­cent.

Sales in the com­pany’s Ama­zon Web Ser­vices di­vi­sion — cloud com­put­ing ser­vices — surged from US$1.05 bil­lion in the year-ago quar­ter to US$1.57 bil­lion.

It was the first time Ama­zon broke out earn­ings from the di­vi­sion, which has by some es­ti­mates a 30 per­cent share of the rapidly grow­ing in­dus­try.

“Ama­zon Web Ser­vices is a US$5 bil­lion busi­ness and still grow­ing fast — in fact it’s ac­cel­er­at­ing,” said com­pany founder and chief ex­ec­u­tive Jeff Be­zos.

“Born a decade ago, AWS is a good ex­am­ple of how we ap­proach ideas and risk­tak­ing.”

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