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Wednesday, 26 April, 2000, 21:58 GMT 22:58 UK
Amazon upbeat despite loss
Time magazine's cover
Amazon's founder is confident of profits to come
Online retailer Amazon has seen its sales nearly double in the past year - but has also seen its losses rise.

The firm, best known as a bookseller, reported a loss of $122m, or 35 cents per share, on sales of $574m in the first quarter of the year.

The sales were 95% higher than the $294m in the first quarter of 1999, but those losses were up from $36m, or 12 cents per share, a year ago.

However that was slightly better than had been predicted by analysts.

The results were released after the markets closed for the day.

Amazon said it had gained 3.1 million new customer accounts in the first three months of the year, increasing its customer base to more than 20 million people.

Founder and chief executive Jeff Bezos said the results, far more favourable than the 55 cents per share loss in the last quarter of 1999, showed that Amazon was "driving toward profitability".

He said the company's books, audio and video divisions would be profitable for the 2000 financial year.

Amazon.com had eased concerns over mounting losses and a resulting lack of cash on by raising $586m in Europe in February.

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11 Oct 99 | The Company File
Amazon seeks its place in history
20 Dec 99 | Business
Amazon founder wins accolade
08 Nov 99 | The Company File
Amazon launches new stores
15 Feb 00 | Business
Amazon's fight for dominance
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