May 18, 2024

SEATTLE — Amazon.com, Inc. has started the year on a high note with significant financial gains and ambitious plans for technological advancement and market expansion, as detailed in its first-quarter financial report for 2024. The e-commerce giant announced a 13% increase in net sales, reaching $143.3 billion, up from $127.4 billion in the same period last year.

Despite a slight unfavorable impact from foreign exchange rates, the company’s growth trajectory remains strong, with notable increases across all major segments. The North America segment saw a 12% increase in sales to $86.3 billion, while international sales rose 10% to $31.9 billion — 11% growth when adjusted for currency fluctuations. Amazon Web Services (AWS), the company’s cloud computing division, continued its impressive performance, with sales climbing 17% to $25 billion.

Operating income for the quarter surged to $15.3 billion, a substantial rise from $4.8 billion in the first quarter of 2023. This growth was reflected across all segments, with North American operating income increasing more than fivefold to $5 billion and the international segment turning a previous loss into a $0.9 billion gain. AWS contributed significantly with $9.4 billion in operating income, up from $5.1 billion last year.

Net income significantly rose to $10.4 billion, or $0.98 per diluted share, compared with $3.2 billion, or $0.31 per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2023. This increase includes a pre-tax valuation loss of $2 billion from the company’s investment in Rivian Automotive, Inc., underscoring the volatile nature of investment returns.

Strategic Highlights and Innovations

Under the leadership of CEO Andy Jassy, Amazon is excelling financially and deepening its engagement with technological innovation and customer experience. Jassy highlighted the accelerated growth of AWS, driven by its expanding AI capabilities and infrastructure modernization. Meanwhile, the company’s retail arm is not only enhancing product selection and delivery speeds but also reducing operational costs.

Amazon has continued to invest heavily in customer-centric innovations. It has significantly expanded its delivery capabilities, with more than 2 billion units delivered the same or next day globally in the first quarter alone. In major cities like London, Tokyo, and Toronto, three-quarters of items now arrive within a day.

The company also broadened its product offerings with new and exclusive brands across various categories and conducted global shopping events offering significant discounts. These initiatives not only enhanced customer satisfaction but also drove sales volume and brand loyalty.

In healthcare, Amazon has expanded its services, including directly delivering critical medications and launching health programs to enhance patient care through digital platforms. The company has also rolled out a grocery subscription service, offering unlimited deliveries for orders over $35 from Whole Foods Market and Amazon Fresh.

Technological Prowess and Future Outlook

Amazon’s commitment to innovation is evident in its use of AI across various operations, from enhancing AWS offerings to integrating AI in customer service applications. The company’s Prime Video is set to expand its content slate significantly, streaming its first NFL Wild Card playoff game in 2025 and continually adding to its local and global original content lineup.

Amazon plans to expand its AWS infrastructure with significant investments in new data centers and technology solutions. This includes future launches of AWS infrastructure regions in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Mexico, involving investments surpassing $5 billion in each location.

As Amazon continues its growth, it remains focused on scaling its operations responsibly and sustainably, seeking to blend technological innovation with robust financial performance.

For the upcoming second quarter of 2024, Amazon expects net sales to be between $144 billion and $149 billion, reflecting a growth of 7% to 11% compared with the second quarter of 2023. Operating income is projected to be between $10 billion and $14 billion, compared with $7.7 billion in the same period last year, indicating continuing profitability and operational efficiency.

Amazon’s robust start to 2024 sets a positive tone for its strategies moving forward, blending growth with innovation in ways that promise to enhance customer experiences while driving shareholder value.