Health investors following Bezos' health investments, as well as his broader business strategy, should understand the following.
First, Bezos seems to want to disrupt the middlemen. In the case of Drugstore.com, that was the burgeoning supply chain, including pharmacy benefits managers and distributors, that sit between the manufacturer and the pharmacy. Zocdoc made it easier to find a doctor, no matter your insurance plan.
Secondly, Bezos has no problem taking his time on an opportunity, even if it takes decades. For instance, since the Drugstore.com sale, Amazon has held regular strategy meetings to talk through whether it should finally start selling drugs online. Bezos would not have taken the decision to start a health care consortium lightly, and it's safe to assume that.
He's also fairly good at picking winners in health care, a complicated sector that has eluded many tech executives before him. The Celgene-Juno deal is good evidence of that.
Finally, he seems to be making audacious bets that would shake up the U.S. health care system. Grail, for instance, represents a huge opportunity to change how cancer is diagnosed and even treated, but faces some huge obstacles.
One unknown: Whether Amazon will partner with these companies, or compete with them, as it executes on its goals.
But one start-up CEO whose company received an investment from Amazon is optimistic that the company will be able to do great things with its new partnership.
"Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase are key players in e-commerce, underwriting and consumer finance, and as such positioned to create something really advantageous for patients from this greenfield," said Zocdoc CEO Oliver Kharraz. "I don't think you need to start from scratch to make health care more efficient."