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Posted by PG

From Amazon Investor Relations:

Amazon.com, Inc. today announced financial results for its second quarter ended June 30, 2017.

Operating cash flow increased 37% to $17.9 billion for the trailing twelve months, compared with $13.0 billion for the trailing twelve months ended June 30, 2016. Free cash flow increased to $9.7 billion for the trailing twelve months, compared with $7.7 billion for the trailing twelve months ended June 30, 2016.

. . . .

Net sales increased 25% to $38.0 billion in the second quarter, compared with $30.4 billion in second quarter 2016. Excluding the $502 millionunfavorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the quarter, net sales increased 26% compared with second quarter 2016.

Operating income decreased 51% to $628 million in the second quarter, compared with operating income of $1.3 billion in second quarter 2016.

Net income was $197 million in the second quarter, or $0.40 per diluted share, compared with net income of $857 million, or $1.78 per diluted share, in second quarter 2016.

Link to the rest at Amazon Investor Relations

Here are some excerpts from the Wall Street Journal’s first article after the announcement:

Amazon’s performance contrasts with many traditional U.S. retailers, which are struggling with declining foot traffic and the shift of consumer spending online. At a time when Amazon is investing heavily and expanding, other retailers are saddled with high debt loads and falling sales, forcing them to close stores and cut jobs—and extending Amazon’s advantage.

Amazon’s strong quarterly sales growth—a feat it repeats every quarter—reflects how the online retail giant keeps broadening the categories it operates in. In recent weeks, it has become an official seller for Nike Inc. and Sears Holding Corp.’s Kenmore brand of appliances.

Amazon.com Inc.’s revenue rose 25% in the second quarter, bucking the retail industry’s slump with its dominance of online shopping.

However, Amazon said Thursday that profits fell 77% as Amazon spent heavily to expand. Profits were $197 million, or 40 cents, down from $857 million, or $1.78 per share, a year earlier. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected adjusted earnings of $1.42 per share.

. . . .

Shares of the company fell 1.2% in after-hours trading after finishing $1,046 on Thursday. Shares were up about 39% year-to-date after the close.

. . . .

Amazon’s performance contrasts with many traditional U.S. retailers, which are struggling with declining foot traffic and the shift of consumer spending online. At a time when Amazon is investing heavily and expanding, other retailers are saddled with high debt loads and falling sales, forcing them to close stores and cut jobs—and extending Amazon’s advantage.

Amazon’s strong quarterly sales growth—a feat it repeats every quarter—reflects how the online retail giant keeps broadening the categories it operates in. In recent weeks, it has become an official seller for Nike Inc. and Sears Holding Corp.’s Kenmore brand of appliances.

. . . .

Amazon’s ever-increasing clout is accompanied by a new phase of heightened investment, after several quarters of spending discipline. The retailer is plowing profits back into product development, warehouse building and delivery infrastructure, as well as overseas expansion and video content.

. . . .

It said on Wednesday it plans to host a giant job fair next week to hire for its 50,000 current U.S. warehouse openings, part of its pledge to hire 130,000 U.S. workers through mid-2018. Amazon said Thursday that its global workforce rose by more than 31,000 in the second quarter to 382,400.

Link to the rest at  Wall Street Journal

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Posted by PG

From Fast Company:

People who wind up becoming their own bosses because they have to–after a layoff, say, or to escape a toxic work culture–may be outnumbered by those who start freelancing by choice.

According to the latest study by the Freelancers Union and Upwork, 63% of the freelance workforce (which numbers as many as 55 million strong) reported doing so voluntarily rather than out of necessity, and 79% agreed that it’s better than working a normal job. In fact, Adobe’s analysts discovered that having the second (or third) job improved the mental outlook among 78% of those moonlighting–largely because they used their gigs to advance their careers through honing skills or by expanding their network.

But it’s not necessarily high satisfaction ratings across the board. Recent research by Intuit and LinkedIn ProFinder, the platform’s freelance marketplace, suggests that personality plays a big role in how happy independent workers actually are with solo-gigging. Here’s what it takes to figure out whether freelancing is right for you–based on your values, passions, and top motivations.

. . . .

 1. THEY’RE PURPOSE-DRIVEN

Thogori Karago, LinkedIn ProFinder’s senior product manager, points out that freelancers’ motivations are usually pretty personal–which means they vary as widely as the people who choose to freelance. So while earning more money was the main reason an overwhelming majority (88%) chose to hold down a side gig, money alone isn’t enough to keep most freelancers happy. A whopping 97% of those who made the leap to full-time freelance work said they wanted to take on more purpose-driven projects.

. . . .

2. THEY LIKE TO HAVE THEIR HANDS ON THE CONTROLS

What keeps most full-time workers from taking the plunge–or even dipping a toe–into the freelance pool? The Freelancers Union/Upwork survey found “worries about income predictability” topping the list. So while you might expect business builders to be motivated by revenue, says Karago, only 5% of this group names money as their key motivation.

Finances are a bigger driver for career freelancers, who ironically depend on contract work to fill their coffers. “If you like being in control and are comfortable with risk and uncertainty, it’s also likely you’ll adapt well to freelance life,” Karago contends.

Link to the rest at Fast Company

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Most people dream

Jul. 27th, 2017 05:00 pm
[syndicated profile] thepassivevoice_feed

Posted by PG

Most people dream a dream when they are asleep. But to be a writer, you have to dream while you are awake, intentionally. So I get up early in the morning, 4 o’clock, and I sit at my desk and what I do is just dream. After three or four hours, that’s enough. In the afternoon, I run. The next day, the dream will continue.

Haruki Murakami

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Inside Amazon UK’s new headquarters

Jul. 27th, 2017 04:54 pm
[syndicated profile] thepassivevoice_feed

Posted by PG

From The Bookseller:

Employees from the book world were among those who celebrated the launch of Amazon’s new 15-storey headquarters in London’s Shoreditch on Wednesday night (26th July).

The Publishers Association’s chief executive Stephen Lotinga attended the event, which featured a performance by singer Ella Eyre, along with Sam Missingham, formerly of HarperCollins, RCW agent Sam Copeland and Thomas & Mercer author Mark Edwards.

Former Waterstones managing director Dominic Myers, now head of Amazon Publishing in Europe, and former HarperCollins managing director Simon Johnson, who is also now at Amazon, were also in attendance.

Amazon’s UK Country Manager Doug Gurr hosted the event at the 600,000sq ft space, which includes half an acre of public piazza and events space and 20,000 sq ft of retail, including cafés and restaurants offering alfresco dining.

. . . .

The e-commerce giant said the interior was designed to “celebrate the industrial heritage and rich culture of Shoreditch” and would be complemented by a “rotating selection of art provided by local artists”.

Employees get the benefit of working in “light and airy open plan work spaces with adjustable sitting/standing desks” and there is also be a large auditorium for employee events and two large outdoor spaces offering views over London.

. . . .

With the opening of the new building, Amazon announced it would more than double the number of staff working in research and development from 450 to 900. They will primarily be working on Amazon’s global Prime Video service, over three dedicated floors in the new building, the company said.

Politicians Sadiq Khan, the Labour London mayor, and Conservative Culture Minister Matt Hancock, both threw their weight behind the opening.

Khan pointed out Amazon’s was the latest in a long line of recent major investments in London by global tech firms over the last year. “London is open to talent, innovation and entrepreneurship and the natural place for major global companies to call home – and it’s great news that Amazon has put its confidence in our unique blend of talent, creativity and access to finance,” he said.

While Hancock called the move “great news for Britain”.

“Amazon’s increased investment in developing cutting-edge technology in London is another vote of confidence in the UK as a world-leading centre of creativity and innovation,” he added.

Link to the rest at The Bookseller

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Posted by PG

From Shelf Awareness:

In the first six months of 2017, Canadian book buyers spent C$398 million (about US$318.2 million) on English-language printed books, a drop of 2.7% from the first half of 2016, according to a BookNet Canada SalesData survey of 966 Canadian book buyers.

At the same time, those buyers increased their purchases of e-books by 3%. E-books now have 20% of the Canadian English-language market. Paperbacks lead with 51% of that market, followed by hardcovers at 23%.

Online shopping, which includes print book sales and e-book and audiobook downloads, rose to 52% of overall book sales, up from 50% in the same period in 2016. The second-most popular purchasing channel is chain bookstores, with a “fairly steady” 25% market share.

Link to the rest at Shelf Awareness

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Posted by PG

From Domo:

Link to the rest at Domo and here’s a link to a .png file that you can click to enlarge the infographic to a larger size.

PG was impressed by this in that many of the activities shown describe communications that individuals create themselves, at least in part.

On the other hand, 103,447,520 spam emails sent every minute.

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