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Amazon's infamous 1997 letter to shareholders was reportedly co-written by the company's first CFO, Joy Covey (AMZN)

Amazon's infamous 1997 letter to shareholders was reportedly co-written by the company's first CFO, Joy Covey (AMZN)
Joy Covey, Google Plus



In 1997, Amazon issued its first letter to shareholders. It has since become infamous in the tech industry, and core to Amazon's origin story.




It laid out Amazon's long-term goals, and stressed to investors the importance of focusing on long-term value over short-term returns — a strategy since adopted by many major internet companies, from Uber to WeWork.




The letter is signed by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, and has always been attributed to him. But according to reporting by Recode's Jason Del Rey, the letter may have been co-authored by Amazon's first CFO, Joy Covey.




Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.



In 2019, Amazon is one of the biggest companies in the world.
The company has expanded out dramatically from its original role as an online bookstore — Amazon now sells everything from food to homes. Its cloud computing business powers huge swaths of the internet. Its CEO's divorce is front-page news.
But in 1997, when the company's first letter to shareholders was first introduced, Amazon was relatively small. Despite its small footprint at the time, the letter to shareholders laid out a bold vision for the future of the company.
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