Amazon.com has become a household name. Nearly everyone has purchased something from their website. Amazon is the world’s largest online retail site, and that is no small feat. With hundreds of thousands of online retailers in the market place and evolving consumer expectations that stem from constantly changing technology, staying ahead in that market can prove very difficult. As competitive as the online retail market is Amazon has always found a way to be ahead of the curve. Their sales figures are astounding, posting revenue of $74.5 billion in 2013, which is higher than the GDP’s of half the countries in the world. As large as Amazon is it’s hard to imagine it’s humble beginnings in the garage of Jeff Bezos in Bellevue Washington.
Jeff Bezos had a history of excellence long before he founded what would become the wildly successful e-commerce giant that is Amazon. Jeff went to high school at Miami Palmetto Senior High School. While he was there he attended the Student Science Training Program at the University of Florida, where he received the Silver Knight Award. He also graduated high school as valedictorian. Jeff went on Princeton University intending to study physics. It wasn’t long before he switched his focus towards technology. Jeff graduated in 1986 with a bachelor degree in electrical engineering and computer science. He was elected to the honor societies Phi Beta Kappa and Tau Beta Pi. He also served as the president of the Princeton chapter of the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space.
Following his academic achievements, Jeff had a successful business career well before Amazon. After school Jeff went to work on Wall Street in the computer science field. His next venture was to work for a company named Fitel. He worked with them on building a network for international trade. After he left Fitel he worked at Bankers Trust, where he would eventually become the vice president. Bezos later became the youngest Senior Vice President at D.E. Shaw, a Wall Street hedge-fund firm.
In 1994, A few years before the dot-com bubble, Bezos drew up a plan for an online bookstore while on a cross-country drive from New York to Seattle. He had learned about the rapid growth in internet use and saw the potential market that was there for the taking. He left his well-paying job at D.E. Shaw, and headed to Washington.
Bezos was very deliberate and well informed with every move he made in starting his business. Everything he did was aimed at the success of his new venture. Moving...