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Amazon quarterly sales near $100bn amid online shopping boom

City AM logo City AM 29/10/2020 James Warrington
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Amazon has continued its bumper year of trading, posting quarterly sales of nearly $100bn (£77.4bn) as the pandemic sparked a surge in demand for online shopping.

The ecommerce giant said net sales had increased 37 per cent year on year to hit $96.1bn in the three months to the end of September.

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Net profit hit $6.3bn in the same period, compared to $2.1bn in the third quarter 2019.

The figures showed Amazon’s run of good form has shown no signs of slowing down, as millions continue to turn to the platform for delivery of groceries and other products amid shop closures.

The booming demand has sparked a huge hiring spree by the company, which has beefed up its workforce in warehouses, as well as its tech hubs and corporate offices.

Amazon said it has created 400,000 jobs since the start of the year, including 10,000 new permanent jobs in the UK.

Video: U.S. Economy Expands at Record 33.1% Pace in 3Q (Bloomberg)


The company said sales on Prime Day — its annual promotional event that took place earlier this month — surpassed $3.5bn. This marked a year-on-year increase of almost 60 per cent.

Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud division, boosted revenue 29 per cent to $11.6bn over the period thanks to increased demand from remote working and gaming.

“There is no denying that Amazon has continued its bullish hold of the markets across its ecosystem,” said Rebecca Crook, chief growth officer at global digital product agency Somo.

“Its domination of e-commerce and cloud and its growing advertising offering will only continue as consumers keep their attention online and business investment pools into its subsidiaries, especially Amazon Web Services. 

“Whilst this part of the business may have decelerated over the last quarter, businesses are likely to turn to cloud services as a result of the pandemic, giving Amazon a chance to further dominate the market.”

Read more: Amazon Prime Day piles pressure on retailers ahead of Christmas trading period

Amazon forecast fourth-quarter revenue of between $112bn and $121bn, which would mark the first time the company has passed the $100bn mark in one quarter.

But it warned profit would likely take a hit in the last three months of the year, largely due to $4bn of costs related to Covid-19.

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