Amazon.Com Case Study

2808 words - 11 pages

INTRODUCTION:Amazon.com was founded by Jeff Bezos in July 1994, after the former investment banker left New York for Seattle with the idea of creating an online bookstore. He launched the Web site the following July with the idea of selling books to a mass audience through the Internet. In many ways, Amazon.com is perhaps the company that is most closely tied with the E-Commerce phenomenon. The Seattle, WA based company has grown from a book seller to a virtual Wal-Mart of the Web selling products as diverse as Music CDs, Cookware, Toys and Games and Tools and Hardware. The company has also grown at a tremendous rate with revenues rising from about $150 million in 1997 to $3.1 billion in 2001.Amazon transformed itself from a specialty retailer into an online shopping portal, taking a cue from auctioneer eBay, which set itself up as a mediator between buyer and seller. It started selling products from companies such as Toys "R" Us and Target on its Web site. It added merchandise from smaller retailers in its zShops. And it competed directly with eBay through its Amazon Auctions.CURRENT MISSION, GOALS, & STRATEGY:Amazon.com's mission is to leverage technology and expertise to provide the best buying experience on the Internet. The goal is for people to come to Amazon.com, find whatever they want, discover things they didn't know they wanted, and leave feeling like they have a new favorite place to shop. Amazon.com's ultimate goal is to be world's most customer-centric company. Amazon's current strategy is one of expansion through acquisitions and although they have enjoyed some success with this approach it has yet to positively affect the bottom line..INTERNAL ANALYSIS: See attached IFEMAmazon is a very strong company internally with an IFEM score of 3.17.MANAGEMENT:Two factors accounting for 15% of the internal matrix were management. One of Amazon's greatest strengths is its management team. Amazon set out from the very beginning to hire the best professionals they could find, luring executives from other successful companies such as Wal-Mart, Microsoft, Barnes & Noble, and Symatec. These executives bring with them expertise in fields including marketing, software development, financing and distribution.From 1996 (a year after the company had initially began selling to the public) to 2003 Amazon had one goal - "Get Big Fast". That is exactly what they did. Using strategies of forward integration, acquisitions and joint ventures they took more direct control of their distribution, began operations overseas, and expanded into everything from books to electronics to travel. Although this rate of growth increased their market share it weakened their financial position as capital was required to finance the many acquisitions and joint ventures.MARKETINGTwo marketing factors account for 15% of the internal matrix. Amazon has a very strong brand name, which according to a report from a British marketing firm, is the fifty-seventh most-valuable...

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