Amazon.com Inc., building on its already strong presence in Europe, plans to increase its workforce there this year by nearly one-third, to 65,000 from 50,000, the company said yesterday.
The new full-time jobs will cover a wide range of positions and skill levels, including software engineers and fulfillment workers, Amazon said in a blog post on its AmazonEurope site. Many of the jobs will be in new fulfillment centers Amazon has developed or planned in Europe. Several fulfillment centers are under construction in France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom.
In December, Amazon launched its Amazon Business site in Germany as its first beachhead in Europe for its business-to-business e-commerce operation. Amazon also operates business-and-industrial product sections on six retail sites in Europe, including Amazon.de in Germany. The other retail sites are in France, Italy, Netherlands, Spain and the U.K. But on Amazon Business, sellers and buyers can take advantage of more business-oriented services. For example, sellers can make products and prices available only to business customers.
“We continue to invest heavily across Europe in fulfillment, customer service, cloud technology, research-and-development, machine learning, advanced logistics and much more,” says Xavier Garambois, vice president, Amazon EU Retail.
Last year, Amazon added 10,000 jobs in Europe, bringing its total there to 50,000 by the end of 2016. Worldwide, Amazon employed about 341,400 full- and part-time workers as of Dec. 31, 2016, the company said in its 2016 financial statement.
Amazon says it operates more than 100 facilities across Europe, including corporate offices, service centers for sellers and customers, data centers operated by Amazon Web Services, and fulfillment centers. The facilities include a network of 15 R&D centers where Amazon develops such things as website features, mobile apps, digital media and cloud services.
Amazon says more than 2,000 of European employees have participated in the company’s Career Choice program, which pre-pays 95% of tuition for courses related to currently “in-demand” fields at Amazon or other companies, “regardless of whether the skills are relevant to a future career at Amazon.”
While Amazon does not regularly break out its revenue from Europe, revenue from outside of North America accounted for 35.5% of its $136 billion in sales in 2016. Besides its e-commerce sites in the United States and Canada and its six e-commerce sites in Europe, Amazon operates six international sites in Australia, Brazil, China, India, Japan and Mexico.
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