Amazon employees stand outside an Amazon Go brick-and-mortar grocery store in Seattle, Washington, the US. Picture: REUTERS/Jason Redmond
Amazon employees stand outside an Amazon Go brick-and-mortar grocery store in Seattle, Washington, the US. Picture: REUTERS/Jason Redmond

Seattle/New York — Amazon.com revealed plans to hire more than 100,000 people in the US in the next 18 months, grabbing the spotlight as president-elect Donald Trump pushes companies to employ more US citizens.

The staffing-up is not particularly surprising for a company moving into multiple categories from groceries, hardware and video to fashion and cloud services. But the move could appease Trump, who tangled with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos during the election campaign.

"It’s a very powerful headline, and the timing certainly makes Trump look good," said Ivan Feinseth, an analyst at Tigress Financial Partners.

"It’s going to happen in the first year-and-half of his administration. Bezos couldn’t have set him up any better to look good — timing is everything."

Bezos was among a group of leading technology industry executives who met with Trump in December in Manhattan to discuss points of concern. Jobs, immigration and China topped the agenda. Since then, several companies — from IBM to Ford and Alibaba — have publicly announced hiring sprees, though some of these firms were repolishing previously announced intentions. Trump spokesman Sean Spicer said his boss was happy to play a part in Amazon’s decision.

Feinseth said Amazon’s hiring pledge goes beyond political optics. "You have a good company hiring people in an area where a lot of tech companies tend to be outsourcing people," he said. "So it’s very positive, political or not. It’s still 100,000 more people in the US." Over the past five years, Amazon says, it has created more than 150,000 jobs.

Bloomberg

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