Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has said the company’s phenomenal success over the past two decades is partly down to “a tremendous amount of luck and a lot of great timing”.

Speaking at the NRF conference in New York on Monday, where he picked up the NRF Gold award for retailing, Bezos said he had not expected the success Amazon has seen.

He said: “18 years ago I was driving the packages to the post office myself in my Chevy Blazer, and I can assure you I did not expect to happen what actually happened. I can also assure you we at Amazon have had incredible planetary alignment for this to have happened. There’s been a tremendous amount of luck and a lot of great timing and we are very grateful for that.”

He added he is “still having fun” working at the company. “We like to innovate and pioneer, and we like to go down dark alleys. Sometimes they turn into wide vistas and sometimes they’re dead ends. We like it very much in both cases. We’re still having fun.”