Seattle is home of the silent giant called Amazon.com. When I was in the US in October, I visited Seattle and tried to find the silent giant. The offices are not marked but it is seen on GPS maps, one would think that this company would be proud of their heritage. Amazon.com operates in a different manner..

Amazon.com is the creation of someone whom I would love to talk to. Jeff Bezos is in a class by himself and there are maybe 3 people in commerce that can be seen in same light as him. Sam Walton, the founder of Walmart whom built a giant that is all across the globe.

In the developing ecommerce world there are 2 founders of companies whom I believe that can hold their own against Bezos. Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba has built a business that will dominate a developing world economy. Is China no longer an option for foreign ecommerce investors? I tend to think so.

Secondly, in Latin America is a founder whom I have been privileged to meet in person. Romero Rodrigues is one of the founders of Buscape and one of the most thoughtful folks I have met in ecommerce. What makes these individuals different? Long term focus, they were all founders of the business and are now leading the businesses they created. The thing that makes them the leaders, is the ability to be 5 steps of the market. Skating to where the puck is going to be, comes to mind.

Readers will be aware that I have written about Amazon and the scary thing is that I think 2013 is going to be the year that defines the Seattle based business. Bezos, has been using the media the last 3 months to show all what is coming and direct competitors are in for a challenge like never seen before.

2013 is the year that Amazon goes after the big five Internet businesses, the Economist made the point for me load and clear. I have no inside knowledge, but I can see the following coming:

  1. Mobile – Amazon is the leader with mobile commerce and I think it is clear that a mobile phone is coming. Apple I think, it the main rival concerning Amazon here. Consider the fact that iOS devices have become the defacto mobile devices for commerce and Amazon has nothing to counter that. Phone in Q2 2013 makes sense..
  2. Advertising – Google has a huge problem coming and this has the potential to disrupt the entire online advertising industry. I shudder when I think about the amount of income Amazon can make here..
  3. Fashion – yes, I said it. Fashion ecommerce is growing exponentially and Amazon has a second rate product at the moment. I can see Catalogs, apps and huge deals with designers along the lines of what Bezos has done to the book industry.. If I had a fashion business in North America, I would be trying hard to get my product lines inside Amazon from the start. Why? It is the one vertical that has huge disruption potential. I can see a potential acquisition happening here to bolster Zappos, Quidsi and Amazon’s offering.
  4. Social – Amazon pages has flown below the radar and I think it has huge potential. Why, well the Content created becomes an asset in which advertising can be placed with. Social commerce is at the moment a buzz word but I sense Amazon has been waiting before entering the space.
  5. Logistics – Let me be frank here. The tax issues that Amazon has, will lead to huge income generation. Wait, how? Simple, Bezos will negotiate with all the states and use distribution facilities as a barter to ensure that the tax issue is a non issue.
  6. Full scale movement in Brazil and China. Where the Kindle launches, ecommerce operations will be happening. The pattern is, launch a Kindle and Kindle Store and then 6-12 months later unveil ecommerce to users of the country.
  7. Acquisitions – this is the one I am not 100% convinced on. Consider that Amazon will have close to $1.8 billion left of the debt raised after paying for the new campus, I wonder what the remaining funding will be used for?

One thing that needs not to be forgotten, is that Amazon.com is a huge company that caters for a variety of customers…

Some perspective: (Click on the link to see the image)

Source of the Infographic: 500friends