Leadership in America

October 3: Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos founded Amazon.com in 1995 in Seattle. He started with an idea of selling books on the Internet, before most people were even connected. Today, Amazon.com is synonymous with online retailing or E-tailing. But with more than 20 million customers, and as much as $3 billion in revenues, the company is still not making a profit.

audio button Listen to Susan Stamberg's interview with Jeff Bezos.

From the Archives:
Amazon Anniversary -- July 20, 2000 All Things Considered
Amazon.com just turned five years old and the company may have reached a pivotal moment. As NPR's Wendy Kaufman reports, the Internet pioneer has experienced phenomenal growth, gaining some 20 million customers. But it has piled up lots of debt, is struggling to control its massive inventory, and still hasn't earned a dime. Some analysts say Amazon could run out of cash as early as next year. Amazon boosters disagree and insist the company is on the path to profitability. (7:30)

Bezos Profile -- October 16, 1999 Weekly Edition
NPR's Wendy Kaufman profiles the founder and Chief Executive of Amazon.com, 35-year-old multi-billionaire Jeff Bezos. He started the company four years ago in Seattle, and the success that Amazon.com has enjoyed surpasses his wildest expectations. It's now the largest Internet retailer in the world. Although its stock has earned a lot of money for Bezos and other investors, the company has never turned a profit. (6:57)

Related links:
Amazon.com


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  • Roy Williams - Head Basketball Coach, KU
  • Carol Bellamy - Unicef Executive Director