Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) is an e-commerce and cloud computing company headquartered in Seattle, Washington. It is known as the largest Internet retail company in the world. The company started as an online bookstore but has diversified to sell DVDs, software, video games, electronics, apparel, furniture, food, toys and jewelry. The company also builds and sells its own consumer electronics such as the Amazon Kindle and Amazon Echo.
Amazon had 12 month net sales of $177.8 billion in 2017. It has been able to achieve this success through the acquisition of leading companies.
Amazon's most recent acquisition is smart doorbell maker Ring. The deal was first reported on February 27, 2018. Although the financial terms were not publicly disclosed, the transaction is estimated to be worth about $1 billion.
Learn more about Amazon's corporate acquisitions below.
You've surely used it to figure out who that one actor you recognize in that movie is. IMDB is one of the largest movie websites in the world and serves as an online database of information related to films, TV programs and video games. Amazon purchased the company in 1998 and has integrated services that allow users to purchase a DVD, Blu-ray, or digital download of a film via Amazon.com.
Alexa is a big data company that collects information on people's browsing habits online and provides analytics on those habits. The company is also the top way to rank the popularity of websites. Amazon acquired the company in 1999 for $250 million in stock. The acquisition allowed Amazon to implement more data insight into its daily operations. You also might notice the similarity to Amazon's smart device AI, Alexa, though this isn't much more than a coincidence.
Audible sells and produces audio entertainment, information and educational programming on the Internet. The company sells audiobooks, radio and TV programs, and audio versions of magazines and newspapers.
Amazon acquired the company in 2008 for $300 million in cash. Since then, Audible acquired the rights to 5,000 titles to AudioGO, one of its main competitors. The company is famed for advertising on hundreds of podcasts, and has recently begun producing original content, such as podcasts and radio dramas.
Zappos is the leading footwear and apparel website in the world. The name comes from the world zapatos, which means "shoes" in Spanish. Their big hook is that you can return your shoes up to a full year after buying them, as long as they're in good condition. The company is famed for its customer service, and its CEO Tony Hsieh released a bestseller, in 2010, Delivering Happiness, detailing how he runs Zappos with happiness in mind. Amazon bought Zappos for $1.2 billion in July 2009.
5. Annapurna Labs
Not much is known about Annapurna labs, which was bought by Amazon in 2015 for around $350 million. The Israeli-based chip-maker announced a new line of products in its "Alpine" semiconductor line, making it Amazon's first step into the chip market.
AbeBooks is another book-related company that Amazon owns. The company is dedicated to tracking down rare, used and out-of-print books. AbeBooks works with independent bookstores to create an inventory of titles that are otherwise hard to locate.
According to Alexa rankings, Goodreads is in the top 350 most trafficked websites in the world. Goodreads is an online community with book reviews, recommendations and discussions. Goodreads was founded in 2006, and Amazon acquired it in 2013. The price of the deal was never disclosed, but given Amazon's core book products, it's a purchase that makes sense.
Twitch.tv is a live streaming video platform that focuses on video gaming, including walkthroughs of video games, broadcasts of e-sports competitions and other gaming-related events. The company reports that it has more than 1.5 million broadcasters and 100 million monthly visitors.
Amazon acquired the platform in 2014 for $970 million. Google was also interested in Twitch.tv, but was outbid by Amazon. Amazon has integrated Twitch with Amazon Prime, allowing prime subscribers access to exclusive screen and in-game loot.
9. Kiva Systems (Amazon Robotics)
Kiva Systems began life as just a run-of-the-mill robotics company based in Massachusets, before being bought by Amazon for around $775 million and rebranded as Amazon Robotics. The company makes robots for various tasks, including moving around products in Amazon fulfillment centers. The company also is working on drone delivery tech.
10. Whole Foods Market
On June 16, 2017, it was announced that Amazon had acquired the organic grocery chain Whole Foods Market for $13.7 billion cash. At the time, Whole Foods had a market cap of almost $10 billion was ranked 176 in the 2017 Fortune 500 list. Since then, Amazon has cheapened some key food items.