Jeff Bezos keeps his eye on long-term growth and cares nothing for short-term stock value. So many companies fall apart because their CEOs’ number 1 goal is to raise the value of the stock quarter after quarter. Bezos, on the other hand, does all sorts of things that make good sense but would sound insane to CEOs with this attitude, most famously avoiding profits (in favor of using all of the money to grow bigger). That’s one of the reasons why the stock has a ridiculous P/E ratio, sometimes in the thousands, and yet is a lot better than that would normally indicate.
He also is willing to take plenty of measured risks. Sure, the Fire Phone was a flaming pile of garbage, but the Kindle sure as hell worked out. There’s constantly a non-zero chance that Amazon is going to stumble into some new thing that makes them an unpredicted pile of money.
Also, Bezos is afraid of markets that are too good to be true. He gives the appearance of straight up hating high margins, rightfully fearing that if he’s successful in a high margin business, somebody will undercut him. So he starts with margins low enough to discourage competition.
And everything eventually gets funneled into making deliveries cheaper and faster, trying to make sure that it’s impossible to compete with Amazon on fulfillment.
It reminds me of the same ethic and vision behind Japanese companies (focus on long term growth instead of near term profit, the customer is God etc.). Nintendo is one great example of that, being founded in the late 1800 and went through different business cycles, diversifying to a crazy extent (from playing cards to brothels).