The list of Amazon's 'important strategic partners' from the year it went public illustrates exactly how successful it's become

Frank Micelotta/Getty ImagesAmazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos.
  • Jeff Bezos‘ first letter to Amazon shareholders after the company went public in 1997 included a list of “important strategic partners” for the nascent online bookseller.
  • The list included some of the biggest names in the 1990s internet boom like Yahoo, AOL, and Netscape.
  • None of the companies on the list exist as independent entities today, while Amazon is one of the largest corporations in the world.
  • On Thursday, Markets Insider reported that Wall Streeters predict Amazon is poised to hit a $US1 trillion valuation.

The internet has dramatically changed in the few decades of its existence, and a remark from an early Amazon shareholder letter provides an interesting view of just how many winners and losers the early tech boom created.

In Amazon’s first letter to shareholders after going public in 1997, among the many accomplishments CEO Jeff Bezos touted was that the company “established long-term relationships with many important strategic partners, including America Online, Yahoo!, Excite, Netscape, GeoCities, AltaVista, @Home, and Prodigy.”

Twenty-one years later, Amazon stands tall as one of the largest companies in the world, with a market capitalisation of around $US900 billion dollars as of Wednesday evening. Meanwhile, the eight strategic partners on Bezos’ list – all major players in the late 90s tech boom – no longer exist as independent entities, either going defunct in the years after the bubble burst or being acquired by other tech and telecommunications companies.

Here’s what happened to each of those companies:

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