By Danielle Kaye
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Amazon pulled the veil off its sprawling advertising business for the first time on Thursday, revealing a business larger than that of Google’s YouTube.
Amazon reported ad revenue of $9.7 billion for the fourth quarter, up 32% from last year, and $31 billion for the year.
YouTube posted $28.8 billion in ad revenue for 2021.
“Selling digital add space is a cash generative nice-to-have in times of uncertainty,” said Sophie Lund-Yates, equity analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown.
An Amazon official however told reporters that brands’ ability to reach consumers across its ad properties was “largely unchanged” after Apple’s changes.
Lund-Yates saw Amazon’s ad business more in line with Google parent Alphabet, which also has its own data about customers from its search system, and shrugged off the Apple changes.
Amazon’s ad revenue growth has been decelerating from 88% in the second quarter. But the totals also make it larger by sales than Pinterest and Snap, which also reported strong results on Thursday.
Pinterest posted revenue of $846.7 million for the fourth quarter and Snap reported $1.3 billion.
(Reporting by Danielle Kaye; editing by Peter Henderson and Chris Reese)