Amazon - Who Were The Original Investors In The Company?
By Asif Valiji, Mentorship Coach, Lighthouse International
Jeff Bezos is the founder of one of the world's most financially successful websites; Amazon.com. He launched his business in July 1995 and chose to name his company after the river Amazon to help him differentiate his business and yet, much like the river, Amazon’s journey to become the $107 billion a year company it is today is full of turns and changes, the story is fascinating and starts off with a simple conversation in a family...
Where Did It All Start?
Jeff Bezos started Amazon after making a choice to leave his job in finance. He was already successful in many rights and had earned the trust of his parents. It was with this trust and respect that his mother and father became Amazon.com's first investors, as Mr Bezos once explained:
“My parents were the original investors in Amazon.com. They invested around three hundred thousand dollars which was a large section of their life's savings and my dad's first question was... what is the Internet?”...They were not betting on the concept or the idea, they were betting on their son.”
- Jeff Bezos
When you ask most people the question "who were the original investors of Amazon.com?" you may expect people to mention a bank, Bill Gates or an investment fund...Maybe a venture capitalist or technology company? True pioneers however, often have real investors much closer to home because they have built trust in their relationships with their family. Mr Bezos's parents as he says weren't there to analyse his business plan, they invested in their son.
When you look at the trust that Mr Bezos has with his own mother and father, this enabled him to ask them for a majority of their life savings to invest in an area his parents know nothing about! It's a powerful extension of love and belief in their son.
As Dr Stephen Covey, author of the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People says:
"There is no success outside the home that can compensate for failure within".
The resources we need to succeed in our lives are often closer to us than we think, through people that we are often very close to. At the end of the day when we are raising any form of finance, we can have the best business plan in the world, but if we don't have trusted relationships around us we will often struggle. When we choose to focus on building the relationships that we need to succeed we are doing something that differentiates legends from most people.
Here is a fascinating 18 minute video where Jeff Bezos talks about the early days of Amazon;