Amazon’s Finances and Market Situation in 2011-15

Company Profile – Amazon.com

Founded on May 28, 1996, Amazon.com, Inc. is a company that operates in the sphere of e-commerce. Through a range of customer-oriented websites, Amazon.com offers its clients a wide variety of products, including content. The offered products are often rebought by the company from other sellers or third parties offer their products for the company to sell. Sales operate both through retail websites and the specially designed tablet and smartphone application. Furthermore, Amazon is known for its electronic products such as electronic readers Kindle, tablets, phones, and TVs (Reuters, n.d., para. 1).

5-Year Financial Overview

The financial overview of Amazon.com, Inc. comprises five years of financial information and is presented in the chart below. All necessary information was collected from web-resources like Market Watch, Google Finance, and Wikinvest.

2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
Stock Price 173.10B 250.87B 398.79B 310.35B 689.07B
Revenue 48.08B 61.09B 74.45B 88.99B 107.01B
Profits 10.79B 14.25B 19.82B 25.11B 34.02B
Prof. Margin, % 27 31 34 40 57
Growth Rate 48B 61B 74B 90B 105B
Current Ratio 1.17 1.12 1.07 1.12 1.08
Asset Turnover 2.18 2.11 2.05 1.88 1.78
ROA, % 6.48 5.02 0.18 0.84 -0.58

Current Market Situation

Market Description

The Market of e-commerce continues to be dominated by Amazon.com. With the emergence of the Amazon Prime service that offers quick delivery as well as music and video-streaming services, the company has acquired a new status in the sphere of e-commerce. Furthermore, with the testing of innovative technologies like delivery drones, Amazon can broaden the spectrum of its services and satisfy the needs of customers worldwide.

However, expansion of the smartphone market with the Amazon Fire phone was unsuccessful; thus, there is reasonable doubt that the company will be able to combine the roles of an Internet marketplace and a smartphone manufacturer. Also, Amazon is under threat from Walmart Corporate, which is conducting tests for a much affordable version of the Amazon Prime service. Lastly, Google and Microsoft both compete with Amazon for a spot in the sphere of public cloud computing business and are trying to make the prices of their services fitting to battle with the prices offered by Amazon (Fortune, 2015, para. 6).

Amazon has a five-tier strategy for satisfying the needs and requirements of its customers. The strategy includes the “customer first” culture, convenience, personalization, proactivity, and trust. By offering personalized products and services taking into account the convenience of their delivery, Amazon’s customer experience is one of the most satisfying.

Product Review – Amazon Fire Tablet

The latest version of the Amazon Fire Tablet is a low-cost version intended to become an alternative to the iPad produced by Apple. By design, it is sturdy despite being covered in plastic and not metal (two times more durable than the Apple iPad 2). However, the technical characteristics of the table are not up to par with products offered by competitors. The screen resolution is not enough for watching videos in High-Definition, although the tablet is quite useful for reading e-books for its adjustable light sensors. The features of Fire’s processor and RAM are again, not comparative with the features provided by Apple or Lenovo; however, for the price of $50, it was neither quick in its operation, nor it is filled with lags or glitches.

Overall, Amazon set low expectations for the $50 tablet; however, its capabilities has disproven them expectations. While, on the one hand, the Amazon Fire is not the best tablet on the market its durability is a contributor for making sure that it will last a long time. Furthermore, if it does not last, the price is low enough to buy a new tablet.

To conclude, these are the main features of the Amazon Fire tablet:

Pros Cons
$50 price Low screen resolution
Durable Low battery capability
Suitable for reading 2-megapixel camera
Buy one – get another one for free offer Low storage capability
Small and light

Competitive Review

The main competitors of the Amazon Fire tablet are iPad Air 2, Microsoft Surface 3, Samsung Galaxy Tab and Lenovo Tab. All of the tablets exceed the majority of the characteristics offered by Amazon; however, none of them can compete with the Amazon Fire prices. Furthermore, the 2015 Black Friday sales and the Thanksgiving night sales were indicative of Amazon Fire tablet being the leader among all other tablets, including iPad Air 2.

However, Apple products remain the leaders on both tablet and smartphone markets. Despite being more expensive than the Amazon Fire tablet, iPad Air 2 is much suitable for watching videos in high resolution and downloading games and applications. Also, the iPad is much faster in its performance as well as offering much higher battery and storage capabilities, not to mention the high-definition camera.

Channel & Logistics Review

In the majority of cases, customers who order from Amazon get their parcels delivered by the U.S. Postal Service or other options of the possible services; however, now Amazon is branching out to become its delivery carrier, offering clients speedy services with its special Amazon Prime option. According to customer reviews found on various websites, Amazon-owned delivery services are much personal than that of the U.S. Postal Services. While UPS leaves packages at the front doors of entrances, call the customer to say that the package is delivered, Amazon makes sure that every package is delivered into customers’ hands (Frank, 2015, para. 5).

At the beginning of 2016, Amazon has also revealed new details about its innovative Drone Delivery Program (Amazon Prime Air). The delivery conducted by a drone should supposedly take thirty minutes; however, the parcel should not weight more than 5 pounds and be small enough to fit into the box carried by the drone. Luckily, approximately eighty-six percent of products sold by Amazon fits these requirements.

Amazon’s operation comprises four domains: business to business, business to consumer, consumer to business, and consumers to consumers. The primary distribution channel for videos, cloud drive computing, games, and software is the online channel while tangible products are distributed physically via centralized centres of distribution. For the operation with the distribution channel being effective, Amazon implements the following approaches:

  • Bar-coding;
  • Outsourcing;
  • Quick response;
  • Inventory Managed by the Vendor;
  • Cost based on activity;
  • The collaborative method of managing transportation.

Conclusion

Amazon.com, Inc. is a leader in the market of e-commerce with a primary aim of reducing costs for vendors and sellers, providing clients with a large variety of products and services, which are delivered via the Internet and postal services. The innovative ideas like the Amazon Prime Air, if implemented successfully, will set the company apart from its rivals like eBay or Walmart.com. Even though Amazon does not lead the market when it comes to smartphones and tablets, its spot within the e-commerce sphere cannot be taken easily.

References

Fortune. (2015). Amazon. Web.

Frank, B. (2015). Delivered by Amazon: What It’s Like to Get a Package from the Online Retailer. Web.

Reuters. (n.d.). Profile: Amazon.com Inc. Web.