Jeff Bezos went from working in a cramped garage to becoming the richest person in the word in less than three decades.
After announcing he will be stepping down as Amazon's chief executive some 27 years after founding the online marketplace.
Before creating Amazon, Bezos, 57, had a stable job at a hedge fund. He stumbled upon what now seems to be a relatively simple idea of an online bookshop at a time when the internet was still a new concept.
In a letter to employees, he wrote: "The question I was asked most frequently at the time was: 'What's the internet?'"
He later said in an interview: "I wanted not to have regrets.
"I knew for a fact, I have this idea, and if I don’t try, I’m going to regret having never tried."
Bezos may have been usurped as the world's richest person by Tesla chief Elon Musk, but he is still worth a cool £135billion.
He steps down from Amazon after the online retailer reported profits for the last quarter of 2020 of $7.2billion (£5.28million).
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Bezos was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in January 1964. His mum Jacklyn remarried when the entrepreneur was four and he was legally adopted by his Cuban immigrant stepfather Miguel 'Mike' Bezos.
He once said of his dad: "My dad came here from Cuba all by himself without speaking English when he was 16 years old, and has been kicking ass ever since."
It took Bezos four years after founding Amazon to find himself on the coveted Forbes rich list, and he has been building his wealth ever since.
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He had founded the now-huge company in his garage of his rented home in Bellevue, Washington state, after writing its business plan on a cross-country drive in the US from New York to Seattle.
His parents invested almost $250,000 (£183,000) in the start-up and in July 1995 it began service as an online bookstore.
In the first two months of business, Amazon sold to all 50 US states and more than 45 countries.
He told employees in a letter: "This journey began some 27 years ago. As much as I still tap dance into the office, I'm excited about this transition.
"I've never had more energy, and this isn't about retiring. I'm super passionate about the impact I think these organizations can have."
Amazon is now worth a staggering $1.6trillion (£1.17trillion).
Bezos's successor will be Andy Jassy, who runs the cloud computing unit Amazon Web Services.
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