Another one of Jeff Bezos' top lieutenants is leaving Amazon.
Jeff Blackburn, the senior vice president of business development and a key member of Bezos' inner circle, said Tuesday he is leaving the company. The news comes three weeks after Bezos announced he would step down as CEO and become executive chairman, leaving Amazon Web Services head Andy Jassy to lead the e-commerce giant.
"I want to thank you all for your friendship, teamwork, and support," Blackburn, who had been on a yearlong sabbatical, wrote in a memo to employees. "What an amazing 22 years it has been together — I will cherish it, forever."
Hinting at future projects, Blackburn added: "I’m not retiring and will have news on what’s next for me soon."
Bezos said Blackburn had kept him "in the loop on his next chapter, and I can assure you it’s a very exciting one!"
Blackburn joined Amazon in 1998 after helping the company go public a year earlier. He became a member of Bezos’ S-team, the executive inner circle, in 2006.
Blackburn is the second high-level executive to leave Amazon this year; Jeff Wilke, the head of Amazon’s consumer business, retired in January.