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In the 23 years since he founded, Jeff Bezos has become the whirling dervish of corporate titans, a maestro of a voracious conglomerate with enough side hustles to impress the most ambitious entrepreneur. His widely admired but tough-to-imitate approach is now a mantra for both MBAs and would-be disrupters: Build scale by lowering prices, and defer profits until later. Meanwhile, the rise of online computing provider Amazon Web Services—which is both a market leader and highly profitable—has given Bezos an unexpected win. Next up is international expansion, where ferocious competition lies in wait. —Adam Lashinsky

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