Bloomberg has been keeping an eye on Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ net worth and notes that today, for the first time, it has exceeded $100 billion. That’s 100,000,000,000 dollars. He was already definitively the richest person in the world after spending part of 2016 trading places with Bill Gates. Gates, by the way, was the last person to reach that stratospheric level of wealth, back in 1999.
Bezos’ fortune is swelling mainly because Amazon’s stock has been doing so well this year. It was a Black Friday Amazon stock price bump that pushed him over the 12-figure mark today. That stock bump was entirely justified, as one firm estimates that Amazon may have accounted for half of all online sales for Black Friday. Half.
Slivers of his net worth (to him) are being spent on expensive (to normal humans) things: $250 million on the Washington Post back in 2013. A billion dollars a year in stock to fund Blue Origin and its rockets. He converted a billion dollars worth of stock into cash earlier this month.
But at that stratospheric level of wealth, the kind of money that’s basically impossible to comprehend short of talking about national governmental budgets, you can’t avoid a simple question: how much will he give away and how? Bezos himself is clearly looking for an answer. This past June he asked Twitter for ideas on how to be a better philanthropist. His goal was to tackle problems “at the intersection of urgent need and lasting impact.”
As of this moment, there are nearly 50 thousand replies to Bezos’ tweet. Let’s just do some simple division to give you a sense of the scale of Bezos’ fortune right now. If he just split his money up between each of the 47,742 people who replied to his tweet, they’d each receive about 2.1 million dollars.