The next chief executive of Amazon.com, Andy Jassy, who is expected to replace founder Jeff Bezos, is a long-time Amazon executive who has been working for the company since 1997.
Mr. Jassy, who entered Amazon after graduating from Harvard Business School, worked for Mr. Bezos in the early 2000s as a technical assistant and was influential in leading the company’s drive beyond book sales.
Mr. Jassy has overseen the fast-growing cloud computing sector of the company and says reinvention is the secret to long-term success.
“You want to reinvent yourself when you’re healthy, and you want to reinvent yourself all the time,” Mr. Jassy, 53, told a company forum in December. “In order to get to the facts, you have to be maniacal and implacable and tenacious. You need to know what works and what does not work.
In favor of streaming, he cited the decision of Netflix to cannibalize its own DVD rental company.
Since Mr. Jassy’s career is characterized by his leading Amazon into a completely new market: cloud computing, the emphasis on the future is apt.
For customers to operate their technical operations on the company’s servers, Amazon Web Services leases space and software programming. The arm now drives the revenues of Amazon and dominates the cloud market just as the company is leading the e-commerce world.
In the same speech in December, Mr. Jassy noticed that only 83 of the 1970 Fortune 500 firms were still on the list, and only half were on the 2000 list.
“It’s really hard to build a company that lasts for a long period of time,” Mr. Jassy said, adding, “You’re going to have to reinvent yourself,” and sometimes more than once, to stay on the list, he said.
He said the pandemic has improved the cloud change.
“When you look back on the history of the cloud, the pandemic’s accelerated adoption of the cloud will take several years,” Mr. Jassy said.
The loss of a $10 billion Pentagon cloud contract to Microsoft has been one of his major challenges, and Mr. Jassy did not mince words while going after former President Donald Trump for inappropriately manipulating the process.
Mr. Jassy, outside of Amazon, is an avid sports fan. Mr. Jassy is a part-owner of the Kraken franchise, the new Seattle National Hockey League, which will join the league in the 2021-2022 season.
Here are some details about the incoming CEO:
- Mr. Jassy entered Amazon in 1997 and is a Harvard Business School MBA graduate.
- The first Friday of May 1997, I took my last final exam at HBS, and next Monday, I launched Amazon,” Mr. Jassy said in a September Harvard Business School podcast.” No, I had no idea what my role would be or what my title would be. For the Amazon people, it was super important for us to come that Monday.
- Mr. Jassy is the father of two children and is married to Elana Rochelle Caplan. He is a self-proclaimed fan of sports and music as well.
- Mr. Jassy founded Amazon’s AWS, Amazon’s cloud storage platform used by millions of companies around the world, in 2006. The service competes with Azure from Microsoft Corp and Google Cloud from Alphabet Inc.
- Occasionally, Mr. Jassy spoke on social issues, tweeting about the need for police transparency after a black woman, Breonna Taylor, was killed in her home by white police during a botched raid, and in support of LGBTQ rights.