When the average person runs out of money in their wallet, they hit up a local ATM and withdraw some cash. Jeff Bezos is not the average person. After shelling out $250 million in cash to buy The Washington Post in October, Bezos went to his personal billionaire ATM: his Amazon.com shares. In a Form 4 filed on Monday, the Amazon founder and CEO reported that he cashed out of exactly 1 million shares. The net gain after taxes should come to just over $270 million — enough to replenish Bezos’ piggy bank, and then some.
If there’s a sentence that sums up Amazon, the weirdest major technology company in America, it’s one that came from its own CEO, Jeff Bezos, speaking at the Aspen Institute’s 2009 Annual Awards Dinner in New York City: “Invention requires a long-term willingness to be misunderstood.”
In other words: if you don’t yet get what I’m trying to build, keep waiting.
Four years later, Amazon’s annual revenue and stock price have both nearly tripled, but for many onlookers, the long wait for understanding continues. Bezos’s company has grown from its humble Seattle beginnings to become not only the largest bookstore in the history of the world, but also the world’s largest online retailer, the largest Web-hosting company in the world, the most serious competitor to Netflix in streaming video, the fourth-most-popular tablet maker, and a sprawling international network of fulfillment centers for merchants around the world. It is now rumored to be close to launching its own smartphone and television set-top box. The every-bookstore has become the store for everything, with the global ambition to become the store for everywhere.
via The Atlantic.