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Jeff Bezos is the richest person alive — here's how he makes and spends his billions

August 26,2018 02:18

In the company's first post-IPO shareholder letter, Bezos mentioned strategic partnerships with several peers like America Online, Prodigy, and Yahoo that have either gone out of business entirely or been purchased by competitors since. YouTube/ ...and more »

Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, is the richest person alive.
He's the first person in modern history to accumulate a fortune of over $100 billion.
He spends his $150 billion fortune on real estate across the US, a $65 million Gulfstream Jet, and his space exploration company Blue Origin.

Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of ecommerce giant Amazon, is the wealthiest person alive and the first person in modern history to accumulate a fortune of over $100 billion.
Bezos has an estimated net worth of $156 billion, according to Forbes, largely from his holdings in Amazon. From real estate to space travel, here's how Bezos spends his money.

Jeff Bezos founded Amazon, the source of much of his wealth, on July 5, 1994.

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos.
Richard Drew/AP
Source: Wikipedia

Bezos' parents were reportedly shocked that he would give up a cushy Wall Street job in order to sell books over the internet.

Jon Erlichman

Amazon made its initial public offering on May 15, 1997. Since that day, the split-adjusted stock price has increased over 97,000%.

Yahoo Finance
Source: Yahoo Finance

Another big recent growth area is Amazon Web Services. As of February 2018, the company's cloud services was a $17.5 billion business.

Amazon Web Services event
Business Insider

Amazon's rise is the primary source of Bezos' $150 billion fortune. Bezos remains Amazon's largest stockholder, owning 16% of the ecommerce giant.

REUTERS/Abhishek N. Chinnappa
Source: Forbes

Bezos' wealth is so massive that, according to Business Insider calculations, spending $88,000 to him is similar to an average American spending $1.


Bezos is one of the country's biggest landowners, and he and his family own five homes across the US.

Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Bezos also owns a Spanish-style mansion in Beverly Hills, California.

Dream Homes Magazine

He also owns a ranch in Van Horn, Texas, which serves as a base for his Blue Origin space exploration company.

Google Earth

Bezos purchased a townhouse in Washington, DC in 2016.

Google Earth

Finally, Bezos owns three condos in the Century building at 25 Central Park West in Manhattan.

David Shankbone/Wikipedia Commons

Bezos has traditionally been somewhat frugal with his ground transportation. As recently as 2013, he was still driving a Honda Accord, according to the book "The Everything Store."

David Ryder/Getty Images

One of Bezos' more notable purchases in recent years was his acquisition of The Washington Post for $250 million in 2013.

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Bezos has not engaged in public philanthropy to the same extent as many of his hyper-billionaire peers like Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, who have both pledged to donate the majority of their fortunes to charity.

Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.
Nati Harnik/AP

Bezos has, however, supported Mary's Place, a Seattle organization that provides shelter and employment training to those who are homeless, and TheDream.US, which supports people who were brought to the US as undocumented immigrants when they were children.

Getty/Chip Somodevilla

Bezos' most ambitious venture may be Blue Origin, his space exploration company.

Win McNamee / Getty Images

In the long term, Bezos intends for Blue Origin to support large-scale human spaceflight, with the goal of colonizing the solar system.

Isaiah J. Downing/Reuters

Bezos told Matthias Döpfner, CEO of Business Insider's parent company Axel Springer, that he considers Blue Origin "the most important work [he's] doing."

Blue Origin

Indeed, Bezos told Döpfner that he plans to spend his entire fortune on space exploration, saying "I am going to use my financial lottery winnings from Amazon to fund that."

HO/Mike Brown/Space Florida


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