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As it released its Q4 results, perhaps the most impressive number touted by Amazon yesterday was this one: it now has 150 million Prime members worldwide.

CEO/founder Jeff Bezos said yesterday that more people joined Prime during the fourth quarter last year than in any other quarter - apparently driven by faster delivery guarantees, including same-day in many markets.

Variety writes that "in addition to free shipping on products, Amazon Prime members get access to thousands of titles on Prime Video, including the company’s originals. According to Bezos, Prime members watched twice the number hours of original movies and TV shows on Prime Video in Q4 compared to the year prior, though the company would not provide more info on viewing."

Q4 sales reached $87.4 billion, up 21 percent from the same period a year ago.

Net income increased to $3.3 billion in the fourth quarter, compared with net income of $3.0 billion in fourth quarter 2018.

For the full year, net sales increased 20% to $280.5 billion, compared with $232.9 billion in 2018. Net income increased to $11.6 billion, compared with net income of $10.1 billion in 2018.

MarketWatch writes that Amazon returned "to growth after a decline in the previous quarter broke a streak of more than two years without a profit drop. After slowing down its spending in 2018, following the acquisition of Whole Foods Market Inc. and other efforts, the company enjoyed record annual profit of more than $10 billion.

"In 2019, however, the company resumed spending to halve delivery times to Prime members and bolster its workforce, which harmed earnings in the third quarter."

Amazon Prime is available in addition to the US, in Canada, the U.K., Ireland, Germany, Austria, India, Japan, Italy, Spain, France, Mexico, Singapore, Australia, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, the United Arab Emirates, Brazil and Australia.
KC's View:
The 150 million Prime member ought to drive home for competing retailers something that they should've realized a long time ago - your customers also are Amazon customers. And even if there are a few who are not, you should operate on the premise that they are - which means you need to differentiate yourself at every turn.

Especially because, as one expert observed yesterday, it appears that "the fixed costs in building out their last-mile infrastructure are beginning to normalize earlier than expected.” Which gives them even more of a financial advantage.

And because Amazon isn't stopping - it continues to grow and innovate and iterate.

If you don't do the same, you may not survive. And it will be suicide, not homicide.