Amazon revenue surges while focus shifts to AI

4 Aug 2023

Image: © Mike Mareen/

The company’s recent cost-cutting measures appear to have paid off, while Amazon’s CEO said all of its businesses are working on generative AI initiatives.

Amazon has had another successful period of growth, with a surge in both revenue and profit for the global tech giant.

The company’s revenue for its second fiscal quarter was $134.4bn, an increase of 11pc compared to the same period last year.

Amazon’s operating income surged by more than 130pc, reaching $7.7bn for the latest quarter, while net income was $6.7bn compared to the $2bn net loss it saw last year.

Meanwhile, the company’s cloud computing arm – Amazon Web Services (AWS) – saw its sales rise by 12pc to $22.1bn, though its operating income decreased by $300m.

2022 was a tough year for Amazon, which suffered its first quarterly loss since 2015. This was was attributed to rising operating costs and the company’s common stock investment in EV start-up Rivian Automotive.

Amazon has been making efforts to costs and improve its efficiency this year. In March, Amazon revealed plans to let go of 9,000 employees on top of the 18,000 it laid off in January.

“We continued lowering our cost to serve in our fulfillment network, while also providing Prime customers with the fastest delivery speeds we’ve ever recorded,” Amazon CEO Andy Jassy said. “Our AWS growth stabilised as customers started shifting from cost optimisation to new workload deployment and AWS has continued to add to its meaningful leadership position in the cloud with a slew of generative AI releases.”

A focus on AI

On a conference call, Jassy said that every single one of Amazon’s businesses has “multiple generative AI initiatives going right now”.

“They range from things that help us be more cost-effective and streamlined in how we run operations in various businesses to the absolute heart of every customer experience in which we offer,” Jassy said.

The tech giant revealed that many AWS clients are taking advantage of its generative AI services to launch new products, such as Omnicom using AWS AI to accelerate advertising campaign development.

AWS is also investing $100m into a Generative AI Innovation Centre, to help customers build and deploy their own AI products and services.

There has been a rush to bring generative AI to various applications this year, which was largely prompted by the rise in popularity of OpenAI’s advanced chatbot ChatGPT last November.

10 things you need to know direct to your inbox every weekday. Sign up for the Daily Brief, Silicon Republic’s digest of essential sci-tech news.

Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic