As billionaire Jeff Bezos, the topper of global rich lists and founder of Amazon, one of the most valuable companies in the world, announced plans to step down of the company he founded 27 years ago in 1994 – all eyes turned to his successor.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) chief and long-term veteran at the company Andy Jassy was announced by the company as the new incoming CEO. He will take over the role in the third quarter of 2021 - as Bezos hands over the reins for the first time since he founded Amazon and oversaw its evolution from small online bookstore to a global phenomenon.
But who is Andy Jassy?
The company’s current cloud computing head, Jassy joined Amazon in 1997 after Harvard Business School.
Over the past 15 years, Jassy has been instrumental transforming the online retail giant from an e-commerce powerhouse into a highly profitable technology company, creating and then dominating the cloud infrastructure market.
Now, he’s about to take day-to-day control of the third-most valuable US company after Apple and Microsoft.
Jassy, who turned 53 in January, is a member of Amazon’s executive suite - dubbed the “S-team”.
While he’s been head of AWS since its inception, Bezos promoted him by giving him the title of AWS CEO in 2016.
While far from a household name like his predecessor, Jassy has been one of the most consequential executives in Amazon’s history; with cloud computing becoming an integral part Amazon’s meteoric success. The online giant is today worth about $1.6trillion.
In September, a column in the Washington Post – owned by Bezos - called Jassy, who is estimated to have a net worth of about $440 million, the “clear heir apparent” to Bezos.
Jassy graduated from Harvard University in 1990 and from Harvard Business School in 1997.
After immediately embarking on a career at Amazon, he stayed loyal to the company and never left.
Amazon paid Jassy a total of $348,809 in 2019, down from $19.7 million in 2018, when he received over $19 million in stock awards, according to the company’s most recent proxy statement.
He owns about 85,000 shares, valued at about $287.3 million.
Jassy has notably been able to attract all types of businesses and organizations to AWS products, offering services for the smallest of startups and the world’s largest enterprises - such as Apple, Netflix and Spotify – helping Amazon gain an insurmountable lead on competitors.
According to a profile of Jassy, published in Insider last year, Jassy went on to become Bezos’s first ever ‘shadow” adviser, in a corporate chief of staff capacity – paving the way for the executive to take over the top role later this year.
Jassy has been married to his wife Elana Rochelle Caplan since 1997, who works as a marketing manager at Amazon. They live in Santa Monica.
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