Jeff Blackburn, Amazon‘s SVP of commerce and company trend, is leaving the company after a year-long hiatus, adding to a most fresh turnover among Amazon’s leadership ranks.
Blackburn, who went on a one-year sabbatical in 2020, used to be thought to be one of CEO Jeff Bezos’ top lieutenants all the map by his 22-year tenure at Amazon and used to be regularly talked about as a skill successor to Bezos. Blackburn had roles in a diffusion of businesses right by his time on the company, alongside with Amazon’s Top Video streaming unit, its Amazon Studios film division, Amazon Music and its promoting unit.
News of Blackburn’s departure and his farewell memo maintain been previously reported by GeekWire. An Amazon spokesperson confirmed his departure to CNBC.
Blackburn introduced his exit from the company in an inner memo sent to members of Bezos’ S-Personnel, a tight-knit neighborhood of over a dozen senior executives from as regards to all areas of Amazon’s commerce, equivalent to retail, cloud computing, promoting and operations.
Blackburn’s departure from Amazon is famous. He has long been a shut adviser to Bezos and has deep roots on the company, having joined Amazon after engaged on the company’s IPO as a junior funding banker at Deutsche Bank.
“I did the Excel fashions, wrote chunks of the AMZN IPO prospectus, etc.,” Blackburn wrote in the memo. “One in all the pieces that sticks with me to currently is that I used to be the one who carried your total group of workers’s heavier baggage all the map by our three weeks of worldwide wander.
“I joined Amazon fat-time quickly thereafter…All over my 22 years, I would bask in to judge I by no technique stopped serving to lift these heavier baggage,” Blackburn added.
Blackburn wrote in the memo that he is rarely basically retiring and “can maintain news on what’s next for me quickly.”
In a response to Blackburn’s memo, Bezos thanked Blackburn for his more than two many years of leadership and praised him for being “a builder.” He added: “Whenever you talk, I obtain myself leaning in and listening carefully — repeatedly.”
Blackburn’s walk far from Amazon comes as Bezos prepares to leave his put up as CEO later this year, turning the helm over to the company’s top cloud boss ,AWS CEO Andy Jassy.
The corporate objective objective currently underwent a leadership transition in its core retail commerce. Jeff Wilke, CEO of Amazon’s worldwide shopper commerce, stepped down earlier this year. Dave Clark, who used to be senior vp of retail operations, took over Wilke’s objective.
Right here is the fat memo Blackburn sent to the S-Personnel and Bezos’ response to the memo:
From: Jeff Blackburn
To: S-group of workers
Field: Forever “jblack”
S-group of workers: I maintain a significant replace for you all, one I do know you maintain gotten been waiting on for a actually long time… The “too many Jeff’s” bug that is been bothering many of you for two many years has been mounted! Over the years, now we maintain repeatedly had more than one Jeff’s on s-group of workers—Jeff Wilke, Jeff B, myself, and for a time Jeff Holden. It be basically how I turned “jblack” to many of you and to workers across Amazon. Wilke’s retirement meant one much less Jeff, and this present day, I’m taking it down to finest the distinctive.
I’m formally leaving Amazon this present day. In slack 1996, I used to be a junior funding banker at Deutsche Bank, assigned to a skill Amazon IPO carrying out. I did the excel fashions, wrote chunks of the AMZN IPO prospectus, etc. One in all the pieces that sticks with me to currently is that I used to be the one who carried your total group of workers’s heavier baggage all the map by our three weeks of worldwide wander. There used to be no Zoom or Chime, so it used to be quite a grueling direction of help then.
In early 1998, I used to be suggested by the legendary CFO Joy Covey, that the gain net site might well turn out to be more than books… “you maintain gotten to finest come up right here now, have faith me.” Wow, you mean bask in Tapes & CDs & VHS? Completed.
I joined Amazon fat-time quickly thereafter. I would enact loads of setting up with you all – 3P market, M&A and BusDev teams, A9, Advertising and marketing, Amazon Music, Top Video, Amazon Studios. All over my 22 years, I would bask in to judge I by no technique stopped serving to lift these heavier baggage. The more fresh initiatives, the ones that took extra braveness and long-term thinking by our group of workers. And I am hoping that, on the margin, I pushed s-group of workers and Amazon to be even more heroic, undercover agent around corners, judge broad. With the core commerce in as solid a do as it be ever been, I do know that’s what customers will want from you over the subsequent decade.
Terrific modern s-group of workers leaders maintain stepped into these broad roles and are persevering with to originate and boldly impress. I bask in and in particular commend your leadership for the previous 11 months: looking out on the company attain all the map by COVID has been superior – your teams lift Amazon’s most superb when the sole is most wanted.
I are looking out out for to thank you obsessed for your friendship, teamwork, and make stronger. What a superior 22 years it has been together – I will fancy it, perpetually. I’m no longer retiring and might well moreover simply aloof maintain news on what’s next for me quickly.
In the end, this present day, I’m formally giving up “jblack@”. I maintain finest one ask—that I perpetually dwell “jblack” in the halls of Amazon. It might well be an honor,
From: Jeff Bezos
To: S-group of workers
Field: RE: Forever “jblack”
It used to be a lucky day for us once you bought assigned to that IPO roadshow. Watching you as that junior funding banker, it used to be easy to undercover agent your unpleasant smarts — fully on voice. However who knew it’s doubtless you’ll be so driven by a relentless flee to impress and pioneer? From market and promoting to the originate of Top Video and Amazon Studios, you maintain gotten been a builder. And also you maintain gotten helped all of us in the whole lot — no longer finest the property you without extend led. You can maintain judgment and your level of view is by no technique redundant. Whenever you talk, I obtain myself leaning in and listening carefully — repeatedly.
Thanks for more than two many years of leadership. For pushing us all to withhold exploring. For carrying all of these baggage.
Though it be no longer quite willing to be shared, jblack has saved me in the loop on his next chapter, and I will be capable to guarantee you it be a extremely bright one! I predict that Jeff will most definitely be every bit as finest in his modern objective as he’s been in all his roles at Amazon. Easy prediction. Gargantuan congrats to you, Jeff.
Your friend repeatedly,