Amazon Australia said total revenues nearly doubled for the full-year 2019, as the e-commerce platform ramped up its employee hires and advertising spend, which hurt profits.
In a filing to the Australia’s corporate regulator, the Australian arm of the U.S. e-commerce giant reported A$562 million in revenue for 2019, a whopping 92.4% increase, or almost double, from the year prior.
Last year, Amazon Australia reported revenue of $292 million for the 2018 period. The $113 million increase in sales for the year was lead the company’s Amazon Prime subscription service, which grew revenue from $4.3 million to $35.4 million, a 723% leap.
Revenue from ‘other related parties’ also jumped $89 million to a total of $247 million, said Amazon’s filing. However, the solid sales turnover failed to translate into profits for the platform, which has not delivered a profit in Australia since its inception in 2017.
For the 2019 year post-tax, Amazon Australia said it posted a loss of $4.7 million and paid $2.5 million in income tax for the year. It was also hit by increased wage costs, which more than doubled to $50.5 million, on the back of increased recruitment, as employee levels hit 555 in Australia. Marketing costs also grew over 60% to $110 million, as the company beefed up local advertising efforts to attract more Australian consumers to its platform.
In the last three years, losses have indeed narrowed. The Amazon Australia business recorded a $5.3 million loss in 2018, after losing nearly $9 million in 2017.
To date, Amazon Australia retails some 125 million products and offers shoppers Amazon Prime, as well as the delivery service, Amazon Flex, which was introduced most recently last year.
The company also appointed a new Australia manager, Matt Furlong, at the end of 2019 and in early 2020 filed a trademark for the term “Amazon Pharmacy,” hinting at its business interest in the burgeoning pharmaceuticals industry in Australia.