Amazon has announced financial results for the first quarter of its 2015 fiscal year, which broke down the figures for its Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud computing division for the first time.
The figures show that AWS is a $5bn concern and growing fast as cloud computing continues to expand.
The Amazon financial results paint a mixed picture as a whole. Revenue rose by 15 percent year on year to $22.72bn in the first quarter, although this led to a net loss of $57m overall.
In contrast, the AWS division grew by 49 percent in the same period and generated revenue of $1.57bn, accounting for seven percent of the parent company's total revenues.
Amazon founder and chief executive Jeff Bezos hailed the success of AWS in a conference call to announce the results, saying that the division has become one of the largest IT service providers on the planet in less than a decade.
"AWS is a $5bn business and still growing fast. In fact it's accelerating. Born a decade ago, AWS is a good example of how we approach ideas and risk-taking at Amazon. We strive to focus relentlessly on the customer, innovate rapidly and drive operational excellence," he said.
AWS is building its success on the fact that IT spending on cloud computing is growing. Analyst firm IDC predicted recently that public cloud spending is set to expand by 25 percent during 2015.
However, AWS also has a key advantage in that it was one of the earliest providers of online on-demand computing resources, and has had a head start on rivals in which to grow in scale and global presence, and in the range of capabilities it offers to customers.
AWS vice president and chief technology officer Werner Vogels claimed at the AWS Summit in London earlier this month that AWS has five times the compute capacity of all other public cloud providers combined, and that rivals are five years behind in the kind of services they are able to offer.
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