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经典重读 | 亚马逊股东信(2006)

时间:2019-10-06 来源:柯本说


亚马逊于2006年推出AWS云服务这一现象级业务,11年后AWS全球市占率已高达33%,贡献52%的经营性利润。AWS进入的是一个与电商完全不同的领域,客户是软件开发商,主要服务是为用户提供“运算与存储”服务。看看当时的报告就知道,华尔街的分析师们起初并不看好AWS的发展前景。看空的理由也非常简单,亚马逊是一个电商公司,并不具备TO B服务的基因,同时这是一项耗费大量现金流且影响短期盈利的业务。因此股价在当年持续承压,当年公司市值163.36亿,同比降低16.7%。营收107.1亿,同比增长26.2%,自由现金流5.25亿,同比减少12.5%。AWS是亚马逊“第二曲线”业务,看似毫无关联的“电商”与“云计算”背后却有巨大的协同,12年的电商运营让亚马逊积累了“巨量”数据分析存储的能力,将这一能力放大并提供给第三方就是今天的AWS业务。由于新业务需要耐心培育,一些大公司很难将新业务由小做大。亚马逊的企业文化对那些起点较小却有巨大潜力的新业务提供了不同寻常的支持,贝索斯相信这是亚马逊竞争优势的一个源泉。

——国盛社服  焦俊 

 


致我们的股东:

以亚马逊目前的规模,要培育出一个对公司举足轻重的新业务,需要一定的条理、一点点耐心,还有注重培育新业务的企业文化。

我们现有的业务都是扎根极深的年轻树木。它们在快速增长,具有很高的资本回报率,而且面向非常宽广的细分市场。这些特点对我们将要启动的任何一项新业务都提出了很高的标准。在我们将股东的资金投入任何一项新业务前,我们必须相信,这项新业务能带来股东决定投资亚马逊时所期待的资本回报;我们还必须确信,这项业务今后能达到的规模,使其对我们整个公司来说都是举足轻重的。

此外,我们必须相信,这项新业务目前尚不完善,而我们有能力为这个市场提供具有显著差异化的产品或服务。如果不是这样,我们不可能做大这项新业务。

我经常被问道:“亚马逊什么时候开设实体店?”开设实体店是我们一直在抵制的一个扩张机会。除了它能达到的规模能符合前面提到启动新业务所要达到的标准,其它都不符合。实体店网络可能达到的规模非常引人入胜,但是,我们不知道如何通过实体店来实现较高的投资回报。实体店零售业是一项旧的业务,各项服务都已经很完善了,我们不知道在这一领域如何为用户带来非凡并且差异化的体验。

我们每涉足一项新业务,一定是因为我们相信它符合上面所提到的标准。收购卓越网(Joyo.com)是我们向世界人口第一大国提供服务的第一步。电子商务在中国仍然处于初期阶段,我们相信这是一个绝佳的商机。在鞋类、服装、日用百货等领域,我们有很强的创新能力,能做大规模并获得较高的投资回报,同时能真正改善这些领域的用户体验。

FBA[1]就像是亚马逊网络服务的API接口,它使我们面积达1200万平方英尺的物流中心网络变成一个庞大而复杂的电脑周边设备。只要向我们支付一定的费用(每立方英尺物流中心空间的每月租金为45美分),您就可以将您的商品存放在我们的网络中。您可以在用于库存的商品即将到达的时候,通过网络服务通知我们选取、包装一个或多个商品,并告知我们将这些货物将发送到什么地方。您无需电话通知我们。这项业务能给用户带来差异化的体验,能达到很大的规模,其资本回报率也符合我们的要求。

AWS[2]是新业务另一个成功的的例子。有了AWS,我们进入了一个全新的业务领域,瞄准的是一个全新的用户群——软件开发商。我们目前提供10种不同的网络服务,建立了一个拥有超过24万注册开发者的社区。我们立足于满足开发者的广泛需求,比如开发者们一直在为了得到强大的存储和运算能力而寻求帮助,而在这些领域我们拥有从亚马逊过去12年不断扩大中所获取的深厚专业知识。开展这项业务我们拥有很大的优势,这项业务也有着显著的差异化优势。随着时间的推移,它必将成为亚马逊一个重要的、有良好经济效益的业务。

由于新业务需要耐心培育,一些大公司很难将新业务由小做大。在我看来,亚马逊的企业文化对那些起点较小却有巨大潜力的新业务提供了不同寻常的支持,我相信这是亚马逊竞争优势的一个源泉。

像任何公司一样,我们也有我们的企业文化。企业文化不仅是我们信念的体现,也反映了公司的发展历史。亚马逊的历史相当短暂,但幸运的是,这短暂的历史里面已经包含有好几个新业务由小做大的例子。我们公司有许多人,亲眼目睹了数个业务由千万美元的规模发展成数十亿美元。这种第一手的经验和植根于这些成功事例的公司文化,是我们能将业务由小做大的重要保证。

我们企业文化要求这些新业务具有很大的潜力,以及具有创新性和差异性,但并不要求它们一开始就有很大的规模。我记得,当1996年我们图书销售额突破1000万美元大关时,我们是多么激动。我们不能不激动,我们的图书销售额是从零增长到1000万美元。现在,当亚马逊有某项新业务的营收增长至1000万美元时,整个公司的营收从100亿美元增长至100.1亿美元。按理来说,我们那些营收高达数十亿美元现有业务的高管,很可能会对此不屑一顾。但他们不会,他们关注的是新兴业务的增长速度,并会发送电子邮件表示祝贺。这相当酷,我们很自豪这是我们企业文化的一部分。

根据我们的经验,就算一项新业务刚推出就取得了势不可挡的成功,它也只能在三至七年后才会对整个公司的财务有举足轻重的影响。我们在国际业务、早期的非传媒业务和第三方销售业务上见证了这一点。现在,我们的营收45%来自于国际销售业务,34%来自于非传媒业务;销量总量的28%来自于第三方销售业务。如果我们的一些新业务也能取得如此成功,我们会感到很高兴。

现在距我们庆祝销售额首次突破1000万美元已有一段时间。随着我们继续成长,我们将努力延续积极支持新业务的企业文化。当启动一项新业务时,我们会条理清晰地作出决策,注重资本回报、预期规模以及推出用户一直关心的差异化的产品和服务。我们并不总是能做出正确的选择,我们也不会总是能取得成功。但我们会谨慎选择、全力以赴和保持耐心。

依照惯例,我们随信附上亚马逊1997年致股东的信。您们会看到,我们的经营理念和经营方法一直没有改变。非常感谢您的支持和鼓励。

杰弗里·贝索斯

亚马逊公司创始人、首席执行官

[1]译者注:FBA,全称为Fulfillmentby Amazon,是指卖家把自己在亚马逊上销售的产品库存直接送到亚马逊当地市场的仓库中,客户下订单,就由亚马逊系统自动完成后续的发货。

[2]译者注:AWS,全称为Amazon Web Services,是亚马逊提供的专业云计算服务,于2006年推出,以Web服务的形式向企业提供IT基础设施服务,通常称为云计算。


To our shareholders:

At Amazon's current scale, planting seeds that will grow into meaningful new businesses takes some discipline, a bit of patience, and a nurturing culture.

Our established businesses are well-rooted young trees. They are growing, enjoy high returns on capital, and operate in very large market segments. These characteristics set a high bar for any new business we would start. Before we invest our shareholders' money in a new business, we must convince ourselves that the new opportunity can generate the returns on capital our investors expected when they invested in Amazon. And we must convince ourselves that the new business can grow to a scale where it can be significant in the context of our overall company.

Furthermore, we must believe that the opportunity is currently underserved and that we have the capabilities needed to bring strong customer-facing differentiation to the marketplace. Without that, it's unlikely we'd get to scale in that new business.

I often get asked, “When are you going to open physical stores?” That's an expansion opportunity we've resisted. It fails all but one of the tests outlined above. The potential size of a network of physical stores is exciting. However: we don't know how to do it with low capital and high returns; physical-world retailing is a cagey and ancient business that's already well served; and we don't have any ideas for how to build a physical world store experience that's meaningfully differentiated for customers.

When you do see us enter new businesses, it's because we believe the above tests have been passed. Our acquisition of Joyo.com is a first step in serving the most populous country in the world. E-commerce in China is still in its early days, and we believe it's an excellent business opportunity. Shoes, apparel, groceries: these are big segments where we have the right skills to invent and grow large-scale, high-return businesses that genuinely improve customer experience.

Fulfillment by Amazon is a set of web services API's that turns our 12 million square foot fulfillment center network into a gigantic and sophisticated computer peripheral. Pay us 45 cents per month per cubic foot of fulfillment center space, and you can stow your products in our network. You make web services calls to alert us to expect inventory to arrive, to tell us to pick and pack one or more items, and to tell us where to ship those items. You never have to talk to us. It’s differentiated, can be large, and passes our returns bar.

Amazon Web Services is another example. With AWS, we're building a new business focused on a new customer set … software developers. We currently offer ten different web services and have built a community of over 240,000 registered developers. We're targeting broad needs universally faced by developers, such as storage and compute capacity—areas in which developers have asked for help, and in which we have deep expertise from scaling Amazon.com over the last twelve years. We're well positioned to do it, it's highly differentiated, and it can be a significant, financially attractive business over time.

In some large companies, it might be difficult to grow new businesses from tiny seeds because of the patience and nurturing required. In my view, Amazon's culture is unusually supportive of small businesses with big potential, and I believe that’s a source of competitive advantage.

Like any company, we have a corporate culture formed not only by our intentions but also as a result of our history. For Amazon, that history is fairly fresh and, fortunately, it includes several examples of tiny seeds growing into big trees. We have many people at our company who have watched multiple $10 million seeds turn into billion dollar businesses. That first-hand experience and the culture that has grown up around those successes is, in my opinion, a big part of why we can start businesses from scratch. The culture demands that these new businesses be high potential and that they be innovative and differentiated, but it does not demand that they be large on the day that they are born.

I remember how excited we were in 1996 as we crossed $10 million in book sales. It wasn’t hard to be excited—we had grown to $10 million from zero. Today, when a new business inside Amazon grows to $10 million, the overall company is growing from $10 billion to $10.01 billion. It would be easy for the senior executives who run our established billion dollar businesses to scoff. But they don't. They watch the growth rates of the emerging businesses and send emails of congratulations. That's pretty cool, and we’re proud it's a part of our culture.

In our experience, if a new business enjoys runaway success, it can only begin to be meaningful to the overall company economics in something like three to seven years. We've seen those time frames with our international businesses, our earlier non-media businesses, and our third party seller businesses. Today, international is 45% of sales, non-media is 34% of sales, and our third party seller businesses account for 28% of our units sold. We will be happy indeed if some of the new seeds we're planting enjoy similar successes.

We've come a distance since we celebrated our first $10 million in sales. As we continue to grow, we'll work to maintain a culture that embraces new businesses. We will do so in a disciplined way, with an eye on returns, potential size, and the ability to create differentiation that customers care about. We won't always choose right, and we won't always succeed. But we will be choosy, and we will work hard and patiently.

As always, I attach our 1997 letter to shareholders. You'll see that our philosophy and approach have not changed. Many thanks for your support and encouragement.


 

Jeffrey P. Bezos

Founder and Chief Executive Officer

Amazon.com, Inc.


(特别鸣谢本文编辑:陈俊彦)


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