Amazon boss Jeff Bezos to move sideways as Christmas quarter sales exceed $100bn

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Amazon has announced its founder and CEO Jeff Bezos is to step down from running the business as it reported record revenues for its core Christmas quarter, topping $100bn for the first time with help from the coronavirus pandemic.

The e-commerce, cloud data storage and entertainment giant said Bezos would become executive chair during the summer, with Amazon Web Services chief Andy Jassy assuming the top job.

Bezos said its latest results demonstrated it was the right time to make the transition as Amazon recorded total sales of $125.6bn (£92bn) between October and December 2020 - a period that took in its annual Prime Day for the first time, Black Friday and holiday season business.

It represented a 43% rise on the same period in 2019 in, what proved to be, the run-up to the COVID-19 crisis that has hammered physical retailers, forced a stampede to work from home and stoked demand for TV and movie downloads during lockdowns.