Amazon’s investments in online businesses in countries such as India, Brazil, the UAE and Australia will take time to pay off, but will eventually become large and profitable markets for the company, its chief executive Andy Jassy said.
“They’re all on the right trajectory and following trajectories that roughly look like what we saw in North America and our established international geographies,” Jassy said during Amazon’s fourth-quarter earnings call. “…we think it’s the right investment and believe we’re going to have a large profitable international ecommerce business.”
The Seattle, US-based company’s international sales, which include all its marketplaces outside of North America, fell 8% from a year earlier to $34 billion in the quarter ended December 31. Loss from these markets widened 36% to $2.2 billion.
The CEO said inflation, fuelled by the Russia-Ukraine hostilities, had an impact in Europe. “If you just look at Europe as an example —inflation is higher than most places and the impact on Europeans from the war in Ukraine is more significant. Also, the energy prices and hikes there are more significant. So, you can see that in some of our growth numbers,” he said.
Jassy’s positive comments about India and other markets come almost a month after the company fired about 18,000 employees globally, including about 1,000 in India.
Amazon has shut multiple businesses in India over the past few months, including its edtech vertical Amazon Academy, wholesale distribution division and its food delivery unit.
Amazon India country manager Manish Tiwary told ET in an interaction in December that the company was not “shutting down businesses”, but merely reassessing some of its experiments in India. The company would double down on its investments in the business-to-business (B2B) marketplace, pharmacy, grocery and social commerce this year, he had said.
Amazon operates in about 18 international markets, which include Japan, Germany, Spain, France and Singapore.
Overall, Amazon’s revenue for the last quarter of 2022 beat expectations, growing 8.5% from a year earlier to about $149 billion. But the growth was slower than that during the pandemic, damped by high interest rates and inflation. Advertisement revenue for the company rose 19% to $11 billion.