Amazon hits $1 trillion market value milestone

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The online retailer's shares then hit the $2050.2677 level to give its stock a value of $1 trillion.

Amazon retreated slightly after hitting the milestone, and near 1545, it was up 1.3 percent to $2,038.71.

It's official: Amazon is the second American company to achieve a valuation of more than $1 trillion (R15,2 trillion).

Amazon is the second publicly traded USA company to hit $1 trillion, following Apple, which crossed the $1 trillion market cap in August.

Apple took nearly 38 years as a public company to achieve the trillion dollar milestone, while Amazon got there in 21 years.

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But of that massive revenue, retail is slowly beginning to take a backseat to other, higher-margin services. Amazon Web Services provides cloud computing services to companies and government, and its advertising division makes billions by selling ads to companies that want their products to show up when shoppers search on the site.

Amazon - founded as an online book-retailer in Chief Executive Jeff Bezos' garage in 1994 - started trading on May 15 1997 at $1.50 on a split-adjusted basis.

'The difference between the two is that Amazon has room to grow within its two main businesses. That puts the company's market capitalization-the number of its outstanding shares multiplied by share price-at $1 trillion.

"This year marks the 20th anniversary of our first shareholder letter, and our core values and approach remain unchanged", Bezos said in his 2017 letter to shareholders in March.

"We continue to aspire to be Earth's most customer-centric company, and we recognize this to be no small or easy challenge".