Amazon's robot minions
Well, the Kiva page does mention "robot minions."
Of course they're minions. Right up until they give you orders, you fleshy collection of bacteria!
Amazon has had another great quarter raking in huge revenues and, as usual, has reported a net loss as Bezos & Co poured the cash back into the company's business divisions. The bookseller-turned-everything-seller said it racked up sales of $17.09bn for the third quarter of 2013, up a staggering 24 percent on the same period a …
Last time I was going to order something on Amazon, the price jumped twice between adding to basket and getting to the last checkout screen. After battling through several layers of automated drones I finally managed to get a reason why this happened: foreign exchange differences. Needless to say, I wasn't impressed by the whole affair (my disgust had equal measures of perceived sharp practices, drones who won't even read your support ticket and incredulity that exchange rates aren't automatically factored into the list price) and took my business elsewhere.
I'd advise other users to check the final price carefully to make sure this price hike isn't a regular occurrence...
Whilst there will be some creative accounting, the main on-going cause for these losses will be the "laundry list of new projects, products, and schemes". A well run company with near real-time financials will know what it's real profitability is. Hence is able to ask the question: do we leave a billion of profit in the bank and pay tax on it, or do we invest it in something eg. new Kindle, which will generate future revenues and profits?
And if the company appears to be accidentally making too much money in a high tax country then a lower tax arm of the company simply issues an "invoice" for "management fees" to the profit center. It's dead easy - I worked for one company that did this for years - I don't think they ever paid a dime in US taxes.
Amazon never makes money, or at least not much. That's what makes its stock price so ridiculous. It has always been high because they keep growing revenue, and the investors think they'll be profitable in a few years once they own the market, or have moved into new markets due to the investments they're making.
That's been the line for 15 years now, we'll have to see which comes first, Amazon making enough profit to justify even half the stock price, fusion power, or flying cars.
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