AWS CEO stepping down

Amazon.com Inc.’s cloud-computing division chief, Adam Selipsky, is stepping down, making way for Matt Garman, the unit’s top sales and marketing executive.

Selipsky, who has led Amazon Web Services since 2021, will relinquish his role next month “to move onto his next challenge,” Amazon Chief Executive Officer Andy Jassy said in an email to employees on Tuesday. He will be succeeded by Garman, effective June 3.

The cloud unit, the largest seller of rented computing power and data storage, has long accounted for most of Amazon’s operating income, serving as a cash machine that gives the parent company more flexibility to make big investments in other areas.

AWS reported the strongest sales growth in a year last quarter and is on pace to bring in more than $100 billion (R1.8 trillion) in revenue over the course of a year for the first time.

The unit is rushing to commercialize artificial intelligence services after lagging behind rivals Microsoft Corp. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google in bringing to market its own large language models, the systems that power generative AI products like OpenAI’s ChatGPT.

Amazon executives last month said the company’s generative AI operation has grown into a “multi-billion dollar revenue run rate business”.

“Matt has an unusually strong set of skills and experiences for his new role,” said Jassy, who led AWS from its inception in the early 2000s until he was named to Amazon’s top job in 2021.

“He’s very customer focused, a terrific product leader, inventive, a clever problem-solver, right a lot, has high standards and meaningful bias for action.”

Selipsky was Jassy’s right hand during the cloud group’s early years, serving in a chief operating officer-like capacity that saw him lead sales, marketing and other roles.

He left the company in 2016 to run Tableau, a Seattle builder of data visualization tools later sold to Salesforce.com, before returning three years ago.

Selipsky’s second stint at Amazon was a surprise to many AWS employees, who had expected Garman to take the top job. A longtime engineering executive, he began leading AWS’s sales and marketing teams in 2020.

Garman started his career at AWS as an intern in 2005, returned to work full-time a year later, and was one of the unit’s first product leaders.

The shares dipped slightly in New York. They have gained more than 20% so far this year.

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AWS CEO stepping down