Tuesday, October 22, 2013

There's a front-page article in today's New York Times about how much money Amazon.com is losing. The company, founded in 1996, didn't show a profit until 2009. Its revenue keeps growing, but its shareholders have never seen dime one of profit.

Has it taken Wall Street this long to realize that Amazon.com is a money-loser and always has been? It lost $32.5 billion between 1996 (its founding) and 2009. Since then, it has generated just $3.5 billion, enough to pay down a bare a tenth of its debt. The company survives simply because it keeps borrowing to service that debt (pay the interest and what little principal is coming due). But when will bankers wise up?

Amazon.com's strategy has been to grow so fast that all competition dries up. It's done so only by being a bully, by pressuring suppliers to offer it deals that no one else can get. That's called "monopoly".

And guess what? It will be Jeff Bezos' strategy at the Washington Post, too.

Up next for Amazon: A major push into streaming television and movies. They see Netflix as a challenger, and they will go after them hard.

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