Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: Business
Front Page 
World 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Market Data 
Economy 
Companies 
E-Commerce 
Your Money 
Business Basics 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Sport 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 
Monday, 20 December, 1999, 11:01 GMT
Amazon founder wins accolade



The founder of online bookstore Amazon, Jeff Bezos, has been named "man of the year" by Time magazine.

US-based news magazine Time declared Mr Bezos the "king of cybercommerce".

Jeff Bezos is 35 years old. He set up his business five years ago in Seattle, Washington. Today, Amazon is seen as one of the most successful e-commerce businesses on the internet.

Starting out as an online bookshop, the company now sells music, videos, has set up an auction site and is continuously expanding its product range.

However, despite rapidly rising turnover, the company has yet to make a profit. For 1999, Amazon expects to make a loss of at least $350m, and warns that it may not become profitable before 2002.

These somewhat bleak prospects have not affected the firm's share price, and on the stock market it is now worth about $30.4bn.

Easy choice

Time managing editor Walter Isaacson said this year's choice had been "easier than most".

"Because there were two great themes of the year - online shopping and dot-com mania. The minute we thought of Bezos, it was obvious that he embodied both", Mr Isaacson said.

According to Time, Jeff Bezos has "helped build the foundation of our future" by making online shopping popular.

Rapid change

Time's man of the year himself predicts that nobody can predict how the internet revolution will change the world.

"This is an incredible period of rapid change", Mr Bezos said. "How everything is going to change ... isn't really known yet, but I don't think anybody at this point doubts that there's something important going on."

Mr Bezos said he was not worried by his company's losses: "We believe it would be a big mistake to be focused on short-term profitability, although of course we do care very much about long-term profitability."

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE

See also:
01 Nov 99 |  The Economy
Bosses told 'get online or get out'
27 Aug 99 |  The Company File
Amazon.com knows too much
21 Sep 99 |  The Company File
The Internet jungle
29 Nov 99 |  Business
E-business: opportunity or peril?
21 Oct 99 |  Business Basics
The Telecom Revolution

Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites
Links to other Business stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Business stories