Amazon’s profits soar 220 percent as pandemic drives shopping online.

With the pandemic shifting gross sales on-line and shoppers flush with stimulus checks, Amazon on Thursday reported $108.5 billion in gross sales within the first three months of the yr, up 44 percent from a yr earlier. It additionally posted $eight.1 billion in revenue, a rise of 220 percent from the identical interval final yr.

The first-quarter outcomes surpassed Wall Street’s expectations. Shares have been up as a lot as 5 percent in aftermarket buying and selling.

The most worthwhile elements of Amazon’s retail enterprise boomed. Revenue from retailers itemizing objects on its web site and utilizing its warehouses was up 64 percent, to $23.7 billion. Its “other” enterprise section, which is basically its profitable promoting enterprise, elevated 77 percent, to virtually $7 billion.

Amazon beforehand disclosed that 200 million individuals pay for Prime memberships, and subscription income for that service and others reached virtually $7.6 billion within the quarter. In addition to paying Amazon $119 a yr or $12.99 a month without spending a dime delivery and different perks, households with Prime memberships usually spend $three,000 a yr on Amazon, greater than twice what households with out the membership spend, based on Morgan Stanley.

The excessive quantity of orders in the course of the pandemic has let Amazon function extra effectively. It has run its warehouses nearer to full capability, and supply drivers have made extra stops on their routes, with much less time driving between clients. The variety of objects Amazon offered grew 44 percent, however the fee to meet these orders was up solely 31 percent.

The pandemic’s shift to distant computing was additionally a boon to Amazon’s worthwhile cloud computing enterprise, Amazon Web Services, which had $13.5 billion in gross sales.

“We certainly had strong volumes really across all of our businesses,” Amazon’s finance chief, Brian Olsavsky, mentioned on a name with reporters. He mentioned the corporate is investing closely in future progress. It spent virtually $50 billion in capital expenditures within the final 12 months, largely on constructing out its logistics operations and knowledge facilities, up 80 percent over a yr earlier. Mr. Olsavsky mentioned he anticipated “another strong year” for capital spending.

“In just 15 years, AWS has become a $54 billion annual sales run rate business competing against the world’s largest technology companies, and its growth is accelerating,” Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder and chief government, mentioned in a press release. Mr. Bezos plans to step down as chief executive later this year and transition into the role of executive chairman.

Amazon’s total work force dipped slightly between December and the end of March, falling by 27,000 to 1,271,000 employees globally. That was still 51 percent more workers than the same period last year. On Wednesday, Amazon announced it would increase pay for half a million workers and was hiring “tens of thousands” more.

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