With just $5 billion to go, Amazon’s founder Jeff Bezos could surpass Bill Gates as the world’s richest person. In five years, Bezos, now 53, has added $65.2 billion to his net worth.
A surge in after-hours trading for Amazon on Thursday added $3.3 billion to his fortune, increasing his net worth to $79 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
If Amazon’s gains hold Friday, his net worth will surpass $80 billion on the index, moving him less than $5 billion away from the title of world’s richest person.
Amazon shares rose almost $50 after its projected sales beat estimates in the current quarter, adding to the company’s 20-year streak of uninterrupted double-digit revenue growth.
Amazon also beat Wall Street’s first-quarter expectations with sales of $35.7 billion and earnings of $1.48 a share. On Thursday, shares closed at $918.38 and went as high as $965 in after-hours trading.
Bezos’ Amazon beat after-hours gains by Google, whose parent company, Alphabet Inc., saw its shares rise as high as $938.18 after hours.
Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin are worth $44.7 billion and $43.7 billion respectively, making them the 11th- and 12th- richest persons in the world on Thursday.
Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates has been No. 1 on the Bloomberg index since May 17, 2013. His net worth dropped $200 million to $87.1 billion on Thursday when Microsoft reported mixed results and a decline in tablet sales growth.
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