How Jeff Bezos Started – Infographic

Jeff Bezos is one of the world’s wealthiest people. But he was born poor. He wanted to start a business right after college, but didn’t. So how did he start?

How Jeff Bezos Started Infographic

Source: Funders and Founders

Amazon May Face Heat From Margins, Competition

Provided by CNBC

After a breakout 2015, is Amazon(AMZN) losing its luster? While its stock price is likely to tick higher, narrowing margins could weigh on investors, analysts told CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” on Monday.

At $593.19, shares of the tech-driven retailer are 12 percent lower so far this year after a January earnings reportsent the stock tumbling. Now the company’s dominance in cloud computing is facing more competition as industry laggard Google (GOOGL) poaches customers.

Raymond James internet analyst Aaron Kessler downgraded the stock last month, calling for a price target of $655, down from more than $700.

“We’re still positive, but I would say we see the pace of margin expansion to slow,” Kessler said Monday.

While Amazon’s disruption of the retail and cloud space has been “phenomenal,” there are concerns, said Bob Peck, internet equity analyst at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, who has a price target of $600 on the stock.

“[Amazon CEO] Jeff Bezos has recently given you several quarters of margin expansion, letting it flow to the bottom line,” Peck said. “Investors love to see that. If you look back historically, he then tends to reinvest … you’ll see margins under pressure as we go forward here.”

Peck values Amazon’s cloud business, Amazon Web Services, at $100 billion and said his research shows that the business is positioned well in spite of competition. Still, Google and Facebook (FB) are Peck’s top stock picks in the internet sector, while Kessler recently upgraded Twitter (TWTR).

Amazon did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.

“[Amazon is] going to see a little more competition on the AWS side, so I think just the perception of more competition could be a concern,” Kessler said.

Written by Anita Balakrishnan of CNBC

(Source: MSN)

Hey Musk, Bezos — My Spaceship is Better: Branson

Provided by CNBC

The modern day space race doesn’t pit country against country. It’s a game of thrones of sorts among three billionaires: Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Richard Branson.

Under the guise of “we compete in a friendly way,” Branson engaged in a little trash-talk at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

“Our spaceship comes back and lands on wheels. Theirs don’t,” he told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” in an interview that aired Friday. “Because ours is shaped like an airplane, we hope to do point-to-point air travel one day. Theirs is not.”

To be fair, he said that Musk, founder of SpaceX, and Bezos, founder of Blue Origin, would probably give reasons why theirs are better than Branson’s Virgin Galactic effort.

Branson, who said he’s friends with Musk but does not know Bezos well, stressed that competition is good. “You need competition. And the public will benefit from the three of us getting out there and competing.”

Besides space, Branson’s Virgin conglomerate runs branded businesses worldwide in industries including mobile phones, airlines, financial services, music, as well as health and wellness.

Musk, also a serial entrepreneur, is the founder and chief of electric automaker Tesla (TSLA). He’s also chairman of energy company, SolarCity (SCTY). Bezos is founder and chief of Amazon (AMZN) and the owner of The Washington Post.

During his CNBC interview, Branson also addressed the most pressing concern for financial markets: the depressed price of oil that’s seen somewhat of a bounce recently.

He said he sees oil prices likely staying low for a long time, but he believes that’s a good thing for the global economy.

“There’s no need to try to make up a recession [case],” he said. “This is going to be the greatest boost to the economy you could imagine. And everyone is going to have money in their pockets to spend,” because of cheaper gasoline prices.

Depressed oil, which also translates into lower jet fuel prices, has been a boon to the airline industry and passengers.

When the oil hedges that many carriers engage in to lock-in steady costs come off, “they can afford to reduce fares,” Branson said. “And that will stimulate demand on planes. And they can also afford to make some decent profits.”

“I remember $149 a barrel,” he recalled, with U.S. and global crude around $31 per barrel early Friday. “If you can’t make money today, you can’t make money ever in the airline industry.”

Reflecting on what some market watchers consider a bubble in so-called privately held unicorns, Branson said: “There’s always something of a bubble in the Valley,” referring to Silicon Valley. Unicorn companies are start-ups with market values exceeding $1 billion.

There are many good pre-initial public offering (IPO) companies, Branson acknowledged, but he warned that others are going to “fall flat on their face.”

Written by Mattheew J. Belvedere of CNBC

(Source: CNBC)