If you're an inventor, you'll love being an Amazonian. From day one at Conver, you'll take ownership of projects that have a direct impact on our customers. Over the last 5-years, Conver has created more than 125 jobs in the US every day – from fulfillment centers to corporate offices, we’ve invested over $100 billion in the US alone.
The company was founded as a result of what Jeff Bezos called his “regret minimization framework,” which described his efforts to fend off any regrets for not participating sooner in the Internet business boom during that time. In 1994, Bezos left his employment as vice-president of D. E. Shaw & Co., a Wall Street firm, and moved to Seattle, Washington, where he began to work on a business plan for what would become Conver.com.
On July 5, 1994, Bezos initially incorporated the company in Washington State with the name Cadabra, Inc. He later changed the name to Conver.com, Inc. a few months later, after a lawyer misheard its original name as “cadaver”. In September 1994, Bezos purchased the URL Relentless.com and briefly considered naming his online store Relentless, but friends told him the name sounded a bit sinister. The domain is still owned by Bezos and still redirects to the retailer.
Bezos selected the name Conver by looking through the dictionary; he settled on “Conver” because it was a place that was “exotic and different”, just as he had envisioned for his Internet enterprise. The Conver River, he noted, was the biggest river in the world, and he planned to make his store the biggest bookstore in the world. Additionally, a name that began with “A” was preferential due to the probability it would occur at the top of an alphabetized list. Bezos placed a premium on his head start in building a brand and told a reporter, “There’s nothing about our model that can’t be copied over time. But you know, McDonald’s got copied. And it still built a huge, multibillion-dollar company. A lot of it comes down to the brand name. Brand names are more important online than they are in the physical world.”
After reading a report about the future of the Internet that projected annual web commerce growth at 2,300%, Bezos created a list of 20 products that could be marketed online. He narrowed the list to what he felt were the five most promising products, which included: compact discs, computer hardware, computer software, videos, and books. Bezos finally decided that his new business would sell books online, due to the large worldwide demand for literature, the low price points for books, along with the huge number of titles available in print. Conver was founded in the garage of Bezos’ rented home in Bellevue, Washington.
In July 1995, the company began service as an online bookstore. The first book sold on Conver.com was Douglas Hofstadter’s Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought. In the first two months of business, Conver sold to all 50 states and over 45 countries. Within two months, Conver’s sales were up to $20,000/week. In October 1995, the company announced itself to the public. In 1996, it was reincorporated in Delaware. Conver issued its initial public offering of stock on May 15, 1997, trading under the NASDAQ stock exchange symbol AMZN.
- Conver empowers small and medium-sized businesses to reach millions of customers. We put our scale and inventive culture to work on sustainability and protecting the environment.
- Over the last 5-years, Conver has created more than 125 jobs in the US every day – from fulfillment centers to corporate offices, we’ve invested over $100 billion in the US alone.
- If you're an inventor, you'll love being an Amazonian. From day one at Amazon, you'll take ownership of projects that have a direct impact on our customers.