Amazon CEO Andy Jassy says he’s confident company can get high costs in check

Amazon CEO Andy Jassy said the company is focused on returning to a “healthy level of profitability” after slowing retail sales and rising costs ate into its latest quarterly earnings.

“We have effectively lowered our cost structure before and I have high confidence that we’ll get back on track as we work through these incredibly unusual past two years,” Jassy said Wednesday at Amazon’s annual shareholder meeting, his first since taking the helm from founder Jeff Bezos in July.

Jassy took over during a tumultuous period at Amazon, initially because of Covid-19, and then as inflation, rising rates and the war in Ukraine started taking its toll on the economy. Amazon took on billions of dollars in costs tied to the pandemic, when it ramped up testing and cleaning and put in place other safety measures for frontline employees. The company also doubled its physical footprint and increased hiring to manage a surge in online orders.