Jeff Bezos’ wealth has reached new heights following a 4.4 percent surge in Amazon’s stock value.
The founder and CEO of the company is now worth $172 billion (£138 billion) according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index – meaning he is richer now than he was prior to settling the most expensive divorce in history last year.
Bezos’ now ex-wife MacKenzie took 25 percent of his shares, which meant at the time her stake was worth more than $35 (£37) billion, according to Forbes.
Bezos remained the wealthiest person on the planet after the settlement though and his wealth has continued to soar amid the coronavirus pandemic; indeed, the 56-year-old is on track to to be the world’s first trillionaire by 2026, according to Comparisun.
The business software comparison site used data collected from the last five years of the Forbes Rich List to calculate the yearly wealth growth rate of the world’s richest billionaires.
Applying this annual growth rate over the coming years, the study concluded that Bezos could become the world’s first trillionaire in 2026, at which point he will be 62 – though if his wealth keeps leaping like it is at the moment then he could hit the trillion mark even sooner than expected.
Amazon – and therefore Bezos – has been doing particularly well over recent months with the demand for online shopping at an all-time high, due to the fact that physical shopping hasn’t really been possible for prolonged periods.
This in turn has seen the company’s share prices increase, which is handy when you have an 11.2 percent stake in the company. On top of this, Bezos managed to sell off a whopping $3.4bn (£2.79bn) worth at exactly the right moment in March before their value initially tanked amid Covid-19 uncertainty.
Bezos has contributed a portion of his burgeoning wealth to help those in need during the pandemic, though. In April, he donated $100 million (£80m) to US food banks.
He made the sizeable donation to Chicago-based non-profit organisation Feeding America, which runs 200 food banks across the country. The charity’s CEO Claire Babineaux-Fontenot said it was the largest donation in the organisation’s history and would enable it ‘to provide more food to millions of our neighbours facing hardship during this crisis’.