AWS Q2 earnings report 2023

Amazon Web Services CEO Adam Selipsky speaks at the Bloomberg Technology Summit in San Francisco on June 22, 2023.

David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Amazon said Thursday that revenue from its cloud unit increased 12% year over year in the second quarter, a speedier pace than analysts had predicted.

Revenue for the quarter came to $22.1 billion, beating the $21.79 billon consensus among analysts surveyed by StreetAccount. Revenue grew almost 16% in the first quarter.

Of Amazon’s $7.7 billion in operating profit, 70% of it came from Amazon Web Services, which led the cloud infrastructure market with 40% share in 2022, technology industry researcher Gartner said last month.

AWS generated $5.4 billion in operating income, which is down 5% year over year but higher than the StreetAccount consensus of $5.24 billion. AWS operating income has now declined for three consecutive quarters.

Economic concerns have pushed corporate leaders to scrutinize their companies’ use of cloud infrastructure such as Amazon’s AWS and look for places to save money. Last week, Microsoft executives said they expect customers will continue optimizing their existing workloads on Azure in the third quarter.

“While customers have continued to optimize during the second quarter, we’ve started seeing more customers shift their focus toward driving innovation and bringing new workloads to the cloud,” Andy Jassy, Amazon’s CEO and formerly the head of AWS, said on a conference call with analysts.

During the second quarter AWS introduced Bedrock, a service that organizations can use to deploy generative artificial intelligence models that can compose impressive text and images in response to words or images that people submit. AWS also said it is investing $100 million in the launch of a Generative AI Innovation Center to pair customers with experts.

Google and Microsoft are also moving quickly to make money as companies look to take advantage of generative AI following the rise of startup OpenAI’s ChatGPT chatbot. Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service became available in January, months before the Bedrock announcement.

AWS CEO Adam Selipsky told CNBC in June that the generative AI “race” has just started.

Correction: A prior version of this story mistakenly said a number represented revenue instead of operating income.

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