Jeff Bezos Tops Forbes List of Billionaires

Wire Service
By Wire Service
April 8, 2020Businessshare
Jeff Bezos Tops Forbes List of Billionaires
Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos speaks after receiving the 2019 International Astronautical Federation (IAF) Excellence in Industry Award during the the 70th International Astronautical Congress at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, on Oct. 22, 2019. (Mandel Ngan / AFP via Getty Images)

Not even a nearly $40 billion divorce can topple Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos from being the world’s richest person.

For the third year in a row, Bezos landed the top spot on Forbes’ rank of global billionaires. His net worth fell $18 billion last year to $113 billion, according to Forbes, partially due to his high-profile split from MacKenzie Bezos. Amazon’s stock rose 15 percent last year, helping offset some of that loss.

MacKenzie Bezos also made her first appearance on the list, thanks to the $38 billion divorce settlement. As part of the settlement, she got 25 percent of the couple’s Amazon stock. She now ranks 22nd on Forbes’ list.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and wife MacKenzie Bezos.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and his wife MacKenzie Bezos pose at the headquarters of Axel-Springer in Berlin, Germany, on April 24, 2018. (Jorg Carstensen/AFP/Getty Images)

Forbes revealed the 34th edition of list on Tuesday. The list takes into account some of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus pandemic, which has thrown global markets into a panic over the past few months. For the first half of March, 226 people lost their billionaire status and there are 58 fewer billionaires compared to the same time last year. In total, Forbes counted 2,095 billionaires.

“Of the billionaires who remain, 51 percent are poorer than they were last year. In raw terms, the world’s billionaires are worth $8 trillion, down $700 billion from 2019,” Forbes said.

Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates is in second place with a $98 billion fortune, an increase of $1.5 billion. Bernard Arnault, chairman and CEO of luxury magnate LVMH, nudged Warren Buffett out of third place with a $76 billion fortune. At $67.5 billion, Buffett’s fortune landed in fourth place.

Bill Gates
Bill Gates, Co-Chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation speaks onstage at 2019 New York Times Dealbook in New York City, on Nov. 6, 2019. (Michael Cohen/Getty Images for The New York Times)

The world’s richest woman continues to be Walmart heir. She’s in ninth place with $54.4 billion.

Notable Newcomers

Besides MacKenzie Bezos, there are 177 other fresh faces that grace the list for the first time.

Eric Yuan, the founder and CEO of Zoom, is number 293 at $5.5 billion. His company’s stock blew up once the the teleconferencing software started being widely used by people working from home during the pandemic.

Another newcomer: Anthony von Mandl, the CEO of Mark Anthony Brands. His company created White Claw, the country’s top-selling hard seltzer drink that has become a phenomenon for people craving a guilt-free boozy beverage. He’s worth an estimated $3.3 billion by Forbes’ calculations and sits at position number 590.

Julia Koch, of the influential Koch Industries, is also new with a net worth of $38.2 billion. She propelled onto the list at 18th place after she and her children received a 42 percent stake in the company after her husband David died in August 2019.

The-CNN-Wire
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Epoch Times staff contributed to this report. 

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