As the summer-long search for a new Uber CEO rolls along, a new name surfaced Friday as a possible candidate: Amazon Web Services CEO Andy Jassy.
Business Insider reported, sort of, that Jassy’s name has been rumored as a candidate for the Uber job, the first time his name has come up during weeks of back and forth between Uber’s warring board of directors. However, Recode’s Kara Swisher debunked the Jassy-to-Uber possibility in rapid fashion (she later clarified that she was indeed talking about the CEO list), and GeekWire also has it on good authority that Jassy is not a candidate to become the next CEO of Uber.
— Kara Swisher (@karaswisher) August 25, 2017
Jassy, who has run AWS since its inception and has worked for Amazon for 20 years, would seem unlikely to be playing the field. AWS is the crown jewel of Amazon’s non-retail businesses, with revenue and profit growing quite strongly long after it became clear cloud computing was a force to be reckoned with and competitors started lining up. It’s quite possible Amazon will decide to spin out AWS as a standalone company at some point in the future, and it’s hard to think of anybody else who would run it other than Jassy.
And walking into Uber right now — beset by a board of directors sniping at each other through the press, a prominent shareholder suing the company’s founder, Travis Kalanick, and Kalanick reportedly plotting ways to stay in power — could give a lot of people pause. It looks like Jeff Immelt of GE is the current front-runner, but HPE’s Meg Whitman continues to be floated as a candidate despite her strong, repeated denials that she isn’t interested.
The chance to run one of the most dynamic companies to emerge from the Great Recession will tempt somebody. An Amazon representative declined to comment on Uber’s pursuit of Jassy.