Amazon raising price of annual Prime membership

27 April, 2018, 12:05 | Author: Clint Gray
  • Inc. forecast second-quarter profit that topped analysts’ forecasts buoyed by swelling ranks of Prime subscribers and a profitable cloud-computing division that’s winning more corporate customers

And then there was bad news for Amazon customers, at least those of us in the United States: The company is increasing the annual price of a Prime subscription from $99 a year to $119 a year. Starting May 11, Prime annual memberships will jump $20, from $99 a year to $119 per year. Existing members will be charged the higher price starting June 16 as their accounts become eligible for renewal, CFO Brian Olsavsky announced on Thursday (April 26).

Olsavsky went on to note that the price increase is related to increased shipping fees and offering other benefits.

In a recent letter to shareholders, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos revealed the company has more than 100 million Prime members worldwide. Executives on Thursday, for example, said that, while they would continue to partner with third-party shippers for fulfillment, investment into its own shipping operations was necessary and would continue. The company announced the fee change in a call with analysts to discuss its first-quarter financial results. Earlier this year, it increased the monthly rate to $12.99 a month from $10.99.

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The division posted a 49 percent rise in sales from a year earlier to US$5.44 billion.

The company's fast-growing advertising and cloud businesses drove much of its growth, and contributed to its second straight quarter of billion-dollar profits.

Sales rose 43 per cent to US$51.0 billion in the quarter, beating analysts' average estimate of US$49.8 billion.

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USA online retail giant Amazon announced Thursday that its profits for the first quarter of 2018 more than doubled with accelerated sales.

Operating income also spiked 92 percent, from $1.0 billion during 2017's Q1 to $1.9 billion this year's Q1.

The Seattle-based firm spotlighted the juggernaut growth of its Amazon Web Services (AWS) division, which hosts services and content that companies in the internet cloud. In the previous quarter, which included the busy holiday shopping season, it had a profit of more than $1.8 billion.

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Global headcount was up 60 percent from a year earlier at 563,100 full-time and part-time employees, thanks to a hiring spree and an influx of workers from Whole Foods Market.

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