Founded in 1994 and based in Seattle, USA, Amazon is an American company specialising in online sales. It is one of the most powerful companies in the Internet world, known by the acronym GAFA (Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple). The group's business grew remarkably last year. Find out more about the e-commerce giant's annual results for the 2020 financial year here.
For the full year of fiscal 2020, Amazon has seen a significant increase in net sales. This translates into annual sales of $386.1 billion (around €320 billion), compared to $280.5 billion in fiscal 2019. This represents year-on-year growth of 38%.
Over the whole of the twelve months of 2020, the turnover of the giant online shop's business amounted to almost $197 billion. This results in a net margin of just over 80 billion dollars. Cloud services and physical shops generated sales of around $106 billion last year.
The e-commerce giant also recorded an increase in profits. These almost doubled from the previous year's level. In 2020, the group made an annual net profit of $21.3 billion, compared with $11.6 billion a year earlier.
Operating profit rose year-on-year to $22.9 billion in 2020, compared with $14.5 billion in the previous year. By geographic region, the United States remains the group's largest market with sales of $263.5 billion in 2020 (68% of total annual sales).
On the European continent, Germany and the United Kingdom, the company's main markets, generated revenues of $29.6 billion and $26.5 billion respectively in 2020. In addition, it generated $20.5 billion in sales in Japan last year.
Amazon's total assets at the end of fiscal 2020 are estimated at $321 billion. The company's financial assets amount to $43 billion. As of 31 December 2020, the company has $42 billion in cash.
On the other hand, it has liabilities valued at 228 billion dollars. These are mainly composed of operating debt estimated at USD 73 billion and long-term financial debt of USD 32 billion. At the end of 2020, the company's equity was $93 billion.
Amazon's upward trend in 2020 is also evident in the number of employees. From the beginning of this year until October, the world's leading online retailer has hired almost 430,000 (427,300 to be precise) new employees.
In total, the American group has about 1.2 million employees worldwide. In France alone, the number of employees of the company is estimated at nearly 10,000. With the size of its workforce, Amazon is in third place in the ranking of the world's largest employers.
It is ahead of retail giant Walmart (2.2 million employees) and Chinese oil company China National Petroleum (1.34 million employees). At this rate of hiring (of 400,000 people each year), the e-tailer could take first place in this ranking within the next three years.
Also, it should be noted that this total number of Amazon employees does not take into account the temporary workers who come to help the company's employees at the end of the year. In fact, there were about 100,000 of them in 2020. In addition, the drivers (nearly 500,000) are not included in this workforce. These are the people to whom the company subcontracts its deliveries.
Amazon is one of the American technology giants that do not yet pay dividends to their shareholders. This choice of the e-commerce giant is partly due to its focus on sales growth. As a result, the company has not paid a dividend for the 2020 financial year.
Of the GAFA companies (Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple), only Apple currently pays a dividend. The company only started paying dividends in 2012. Since then, Apple has been making sure to pay its dividends regularly. For example, for the financial year 2020, the group paid a dividend of $0.80 per share.
After 21 years of creation, Amazon has reached a market capitalisation of 1,000 billion dollars. In 2020, the US company passed the $1.5 trillion mark by gaining another $500 billion.
In 2020 (as of the end of November), Amazon's market capitalisation is estimated at $1,661 billion. As a reminder, the company went public on the NASDAQ in May 1997.
Like Amazon's business, Google's business has also grown significantly in 2020. For the year as a whole, the company generated sales of $182.5 billion, up 13% on the previous year. However, this was well below the turnover recorded by the world's leading online retailer ($386.1 billion).
In the financial year 2020, the company posted a net profit of $40.3 billion, up 20% year-on-year. In this respect, Amazon did not do better than Google. The profits ($21.3 billion) recorded by the e-tailer slightly exceed those of the Californian group.
In 2020 (at the end of October), Google's market capitalisation is valued at $1,113 billion. Among the GAFA companies, Amazon is ahead of the US technology services company in terms of market capitalisation.
The e-commerce specialist is in second place, while Google is in third place. Apple takes the top spot on the podium.