Ahead of Obama Visit, Amazon Adds Jobs

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) - Amazon ( AMZN) is going to hire as many as 7,000 new jobs in its fulfillment and customer service centers, one day ahead of visit by President Obama to an Amazon warehouse in Tennessee.

To help meet what Amazon calls "growing consumer demand" for its products the company plans to create more than 5,000 new full-time jobs in its 17 fulfillment/shipping centers across the Unites States. Amazon currently employs more than 20,000 workers in its U.S. warehouses. The company has expanded its fulfillment network in the past few years to speed purchase deliveries and lower shipping costs.

Amazon recently reported second-quarter earnings that missed Wall Street estimates, as revenues came in below estimates.

"We're hiring more than 5,000 people to join our team and help us continue to innovate and serve our customers," said Dave Clark, vice president of worldwide operations and customer service at Amazon. "We're focused on sustained innovation across Amazon and want to help our employees succeed--whether at Amazon or elsewhere--so we offer programs like Career Choice, where we'll pay for up to 95% of eligible employees' tuition regardless of whether the skills they learn are relevant to a career at Amazon."

In the last year, Amazon has opened eight new fulfillment centers.

The company also promises to hire an additional 2,000 people for its customer service network. Those new positions will include a mix of full-time, part-time and seasonal workers some of whom will be able to work from home.

President Obama is planning to visit the Amazon fulfillment facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee on Tuesday to make a major economic policy speech. He is expected to discuss ways to bolster private sector job growth.

Amazon shares were lower in early Monday trading, off 0.64% to $310.02.

--Written by Gary Krakow in New York.

>To submit a news tip, send an email to: tips@thestreet.com.
Gary Krakow is TheStreet's senior technology correspondent.

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