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Great Jeff Bezos Interview


bmichaud
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http://www.wired.com/magazine/2011/11/ff_bezos/all/1

 

I find the following quote to be highly impressive for any CEO let alone a tech CEO (perhaps not an accident Bezos is a former HF manager):

 

It does fit into my view. Our first shareholder letter, in 1997, was entitled, “It’s all about the long term.” If everything you do needs to work on a three-year time horizon, then you’re competing against a lot of people. But if you’re willing to invest on a seven-year time horizon, you’re now competing against a fraction of those people, because very few companies are willing to do that. Just by lengthening the time horizon, you can engage in endeavors that you could never otherwise pursue. At Amazon we like things to work in five to seven years. We’re willing to plant seeds, let them grow—and we’re very stubborn. We say we’re stubborn on vision and flexible on details. In some cases, things are inevitable. The hard part is that you don’t know how long it might take, but you know it will happen if you’re patient enough. Ebooks had to happen. Infrastructure web services had to happen. So you can do these things with conviction if you are long-term-oriented and patient.

 

I would love to be a shareholder alongside Bezos, but just can't get comfortable with the valuation here. Something tells me though that some one-on-one time with Bezos (ala Buffett and Geico circa 1951) and some deep-dive industry research may reveal a Google-like economic moat protecting Amazon. Ultra-low margins, IMO understate true economic earning power if one likens Technology & Content spending to marketing and/or R&A for a Kraft/Coke/Pepsi or Intel, respectively.

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I've never understood people classifying Amazing as a tech company. Yeah, they have gotten into tech recently with the Kindle and Cloud Services, but they are a retailer more than anything else.

 

Anyway, I like Bezos. There's a new book out about him that I was looking forward to, but it unfortunately has pretty awful reviews.

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I really like Bezos too and I do think that by being patient and executing his vision he has built a moat around Amazon.

 

The same way Buffett talks about the mental space that KO occupies in the minds of people around the world, or the fact that Google is now synonymous with "Internet search";

I think if we ran a poll on this board asking board members when was the last time someone recommended a book to them and their reflex wasn't to buy it/look it up on Amazon, we'd be surprised how present Amazon is. I personally can't remember when that last time was. And now Bezos has managed to put a Kindle in many of our hands to make it even easier on us.

 

But management is key here, it wasn't that long ago when families around the country wanted to watch a new movie the reflex was more and more "add it to our Netflix queue"! It seemed like Netflix had us all at their mercy especially after driving Blockbuster into the ground but management dropped the ball. The business is tougher than KO's where management's number one job is to make sure that they don't lose the formula for that coke syrup, because by now it just sells itself. But I trust Bezos.

 

 

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I've never understood people classifying Amazing as a tech company. Yeah, they have gotten into tech recently with the Kindle and Cloud Services, but they are a retailer more than anything else.

It's a tech company at heart, that just happens to do retail. Just like Google is a tech company that happens to do advertising.

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I've never understood people classifying Amazing as a tech company. Yeah, they have gotten into tech recently with the Kindle and Cloud Services, but they are a retailer more than anything else.

It's a tech company at heart, that just happens to do retail. Just like Google is a tech company that happens to do advertising.

 

Amazon is absolutely a tech company, some of the best I would say, especially with Jeff's vision. Think about all the amazon web services that it offers -- they are ahead of everyone else.

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I've never understood people classifying Amazing as a tech company. Yeah, they have gotten into tech recently with the Kindle and Cloud Services, but they are a retailer more than anything else.

It's a tech company at heart, that just happens to do retail. Just like Google is a tech company that happens to do advertising.

 

Amazon is absolutely a tech company, some of the best I would say, especially with Jeff's vision. Think about all the amazon web services that it offers -- they are ahead of everyone else.

 

Yes, it has become much more of a tech company in recent years, but the majority of the company's earnings come from being a retailer and marketplace. Their website is of course built around technology, but so is every other online retailer.

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