Amazon is perhaps the company that is most closely tied with the gold rush phenomenon. Since 1995 the Seattle based company has grown at a tremendous rate with revenues rising from about $150 million in 1997 to $3.1 billion in 2001. The company made its first quarterly profit of $5.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2001. However, this was dwarfed by massive cumulative operating losses.

Amazon’s share price symbolizes the effects of the dot-com gold-rush:


Amazon was founded by Jeff Bezos, a computer science and electrical engineering graduate from Princeton University. Bezos had moved to Seattle after resigning as the senior vice-president at D.E.Shaw, a Wall Street investment bank. He did not know much about the Internet. But, he came across a statistic that the Internet was growing at 2300%,
which convinced him that this was a large growth opportunity. Not knowing much more, he plunged into the world of E-Commerce with no prior retailing experience. Despite this, during the early days of the Net, Jeff Bezos was one of the few people to understand the special nature of Internet Retailing and E-Commerce.

Our goal is to be Earth's most customer-centric company, why? The answer is three things:The first is that customer-centric means figuring out what your customer want by asking them, then figuring out how to give it to them, and then giving it to them. That's the traditional meaning of customer-centric, and we're focused on it. The second is innovating on behalf of customers, figuring out what they don't know they want and giving it to them. The third meaning, unique to the Internet, is the idea of personalization: Redecorating the store for each and every individual customer. If we have 10.7 million customers, as we did at the end of the last quarter, then we should have 10.7 million stores.

“In the online world, businesses have the opportunity to develop very deep relationships with customers, both through accepting...