Global conglomerate Amazon has announced its financial results for Q2 2023 as the first half of the year has come to a close, and staff in the UK continue to strike over pay.
The company’s net sales increased by 11% from US$121.2 billion in Q2 2022 to $134.4 billion in Q2 2023. Its operating income increased drastically to $7.7 billion in Q2 of this year, compared with $3.3 billion the previous year.
Chief Executive Andy Jassy described the past few months as “another strong quarter of progress for Amazon”, adding: “We continued lowering our cost to serve in our fulfilment network, while also providing Prime customers with the fastest delivery speeds we’ve ever recorded.”
Meanwhile, strikes have taken place at two Amazon sites in Rugeley and Coventry, one year on from the very first in the UK. Trade union GMB has organised two days of strikes at each site – 3-4 August at Rugeley and 4-5 August at Coventry.
Including these, the GMB says that there have now been 26 days of strike action at Amazon facilities in the UK this year.
The strikes are over pay disputes, with union members demanding a £15 hourly wage.
Amazon has claimed that it pays its workers between £11 and £12 – above the national minimum wage – with a spokesperson saying: “We regularly review our pay to ensure we offer competitive wages and benefits. In less than a year, our minimum pay has risen by 10% and by more than 37% since 2018.”
GMB Senior Organiser Rachel Fagan said: “One year ago, Amazon workers downed tools in disgust after managers announced one of the world’s wealthiest companies would be offering a pay rise of just 35p.
“Twelve months on and Amazon is now facing the biggest week of industrial action in the company’s history – across two sites.”
Reports claim that over 1,000 Amazon employees are set to walk out across the sites as part of the protests this week.