A massive increase in revenue has failed again to push online bookseller Amazon.com into profit, according to its second quarter results.
Choosing to boost its brand over making a profit, the company has been in the red since its launch in July 1995 and reported a loss of $138 million or $0.86 per share for the quarter ending 30 June.
The loss includes $55.2 million in merger, acquisition and investment related charges, but was still a huge jump from the loss of $22.6 million reported for the year ago quarter. In May it invested in Homegrocer.com and also in the quarter took a stake in Drugstore.com and Pets.com.
Revenue grew 171 per cent to $314.4 million in the quarter, compared to $116 million for the second quarter of 1998.
The company, however is putting profit toward investing in the sale of goods other than books, such as toys and consumer electronics and continuing to increase the number of customers using its auction sites.
“We did a lot in this quarter,” said Jeff Bezos, founder and chief executive of Amazon.com. “We’re especially pleased that Amazon.com Auctions is our faster growing business. And looking at the first few days of sales in our new toys and electronic stores, we’re shocked and grateful. In fact, we believe we’re already the number one seller of children’s products online.”
Bezos warned however that the company will invest more heavily in systems, distribution, staff and products to better serve customers, meaning making a profit for Amazon.com could remain elusive.
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