Abstract Background Triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) is aggressive with limited treatment options upon recurrence. Molecular discordance between primary and metastatic TNBC has been observed, but the degree of biological heterogeneity has not been fully explored. Furthermore, genomic evolution through treatment is poorly understood. In this study, we aim to characterize the genomic changes between paired primary and metastatic TNBCs through transcriptomic and genomic profiling, and to identify genomic alterations which may contribute to chemotherapy resistance. Methods Genomic alterations and mRNA expression of 10 paired primary and metastatic TNBCs were determined through targeted sequencing, microarray analysis, and RNA sequencing. Commonly mutated genes, as well as differentially expressed and co-expressed genes were identified. We further explored the clinical relevance of differentially expressed genes between primary and metastatic tumors to patient survival using large public datasets. Results Through gene expression profiling, we observed a shift in TNBC subtype classifications between primary and metastatic TNBCs. A panel of eight cancer driver genes (CCNE1, TPX2, ELF3, FANCL, JAK2, GSK3B, CEP76, and SYK) were differentially expressed in recurrent TNBCs, and were also overexpressed in TCGA and METABRIC. CCNE1 and TPX2 were co-overexpressed in TNBCs. DNA mutation profiling showed that multiple mutations occurred in genes comprising a number of potentially targetable pathways including PI3K/AKT/mTOR, RAS/MAPK, cell cycle, and growth factor receptor signaling, reaffirming the wide heterogeneity of mechanisms driving TNBC. CCNE1 amplification was associated with poor overall survival in patients with metastatic TNBC. Conclusions CCNE1 amplification may confer resistance to chemotherapy and is associated with poor overall survival in TNBC.