In 2018, there were 2,208 billionaires in the world and at the top of the list is Jeff Bezos who had a net worth of $137.1 billion. As the first man to have a fortune that crossed the $150 billion benchmark, Bezos is an entrepreneur and investor who is the brain behind the world’s biggest e-commerce platform, Amazon.
At the start of 2019, the billionaire and his wife announced that they are heading for a divorce which meant that he may see his fortune drop significantly which may, in turn, affect his position as the world’s richest man.
The entrepreneur was born Jeffrey Preston Jorgensen in Albuquerque, New Mexico on January 12, 1964, to 17-year-old Jacklyn Gise Jorgensen who was still a high school student and Ted Jorgensen who was a bike shop owner.
Before he turned 4, Jeff Bezos’ parents’ marriage came to a grinding halt in a divorce and his mother remarried to Miguel “Mike” Bezos who was an immigrant from Cuba in 1968. Miguel adopted the young Jeffery and so his name was changed to Bezos.
Raised in Texas where his father was an Exxon engineer, Bezos attended River Oaks Elementary School and after his family moved to Florida, he attended Miami Palmetto High School and then the University of Florida. He also went to Princeton University from where he obtained degrees in electrical engineering and computer science.
When he was still in high school, Jeff worked as a cook with McDonald’s and subsequently with Fitel after he graduated from Princeton. His first job with the financial telecommunications start-up was building international trade network but he was soon made the head of development and director of customer service. Next, he worked with Bankers Trust as a product manager and then D. E. Shaw & Co where through hard work, he rose to become its fourth senior vice-president before the age of 30.
His walk to becoming a billionaire began in 1994 when he left his job to found the online bookstore, Amazon in his garage. His first investment in the business was $300,000 which he got from his parents. As soon as he started, he made it clear to early investors that there was as much as 70% risk that the business may fail and go bankrupt. Nonetheless, three years down the line, it went public.
By 1998, the company had expanded to selling music and video online, and from there, there was no stopping for either Bezos or Amazon. Jeff Bezos went on to found the human spaceflight company Blue Origin in 2000 and in 2013, he bought over The Washington Post for $250 million in cash. He kept on investing in various other things which have all come together to make him the world’s richest man that he is.
Jeff Bezos’ Net Worth, Salary, Cars, and Houses
As the richest man in the world, Forbes put the net worth of Jeff Bezos at $137.1 billion in 2019. With many investments, he owns as much as 16% of Amazon and is still the owner of his aerospace company, Blue Origin, and The Washington Post. It was revealed that his salary as of 2017 was $81,840, but considering that he owns 80 million shares of the e-commerce giant, his salary is the last thing that he will be worried about.
For a man of his status, your first guess is that he has one of the biggest cars in the world. That, surprisingly, is not true. He is said to own a low figure Honda accord which he prefers to drive himself. While the 1996 Honda which is valued at $2000 is what remains his favorite, he has some good cars in his garage but above all that, he has a private jet which is valued at around $75 million.
When it comes to houses, Jeff Bezos owns a good number of them. In 2018, he bought the former Textile Museum in D.C for $23 million with the plan to make it his home. Apart from this property which has 11 bedrooms, 25 bathrooms, and 5 living rooms, he also has a $24.45 million home in Beverly Hills, $12.95 million four apartments in Manhattan, as well as houses in New York and Medina.
Wife, Children, and Family Facts
In 1993, Jeff Bezos got married to MacKenzie Bezos who had before then, worked with him when he was with D. E. Shaw. When Jeff was set to begin Amazon, MacKenzie was right there by his side was; in fact, it was she who negotiated the company’s first freight contract. While they kept working on their business together, they were also building their family which became complete with the addition of their four children- three sons and a daughter.
After 25 years of marriage and building an enviable empire together, Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos shockingly announced in a joint statement on Twitter on January 9, 2019, that they were heading for a divorce. Here are some quick facts about their family:
- The couple got engaged after three months of first meeting in 1992.
- While they have three sons together, Jeff and his wife adopted their daughter from China.
- The family has been very much involved in philanthropic activities into which they have sunk in billions of dollars.