Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) Web Services Bigger Than Believed?

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Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) seems to be off to a pretty good start to the new year on the market floor, as the stock has been flirting with all-time highs Monday in the wake of strong e-commerce growth numbers being reported. There is another report that Monday afternoon at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Amazon will announce a partnership with Ford to present Amazon Cloud Player in certain 2013 Ford models using voice commands.

Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)

While those two items are noteworthy on their own, they are combined with a recent research note about Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) that suggests Amazon Web Services may be a bigger deal in cloud computing services than anyone might realize. This could be yet another reason why Morgan Stanley recently upgraded Amazon stock and placed a $325 price target on it.

A research note sent Monday by Macquarie Capital seemed to establish some weight on one side of a debate regarding Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) cloud-computing services. There has generally been two camps regarding Amazon Web Services – one that believes that segment is working on very thin margins and is not profitable, while the other camp says it could very well be a very successful company on its own if it were to spin off.

Macquarie Capital seemed to show in its note that, while Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) doesn’t break out its cloud computing as separate revenue lines in its reports, if AWS were to be a standalone company, it could very well be worth about $19 billion. In the note to investors, analyst Ben Schacter wrote that Macquarie is estimating that AWS could very well account for more than half of the cloud market, which is estimated would rise to more than $70 billion by 2015 and that AWS would address about $38 billion of the market.

But how does Macquarie get to the $19 billion figure if AWS were a spinoff of Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)?

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