Friday 11 January 2019

Inside Jeff Bezos' Mysterious Private World

If there's one thing everybody knows about Jeff Bezos, it's that he's obscenely rich. He has the kind of fortune that is too mind-boggling to exist in physical dollars and cents, but rather just takes up a line on a piece of paper at the money manager's office.

Net worth: $112 billion. Congratulations. Love, your very busy money manager.

He's the richest man in the world, in fact, according to the last time Forbes counted in March 2018. (In July 2018 his fortune was up to a reported $147 million, and this week a Forbes expert estimated $136 billion, as the number rises and falls accordingly with the price of his 80 million Amazon shares.)

Even if the name Bezos hasn't been on your radar, it's extremely likely you have contributed to his ever-growing wealth as the founder of Amazon, online retail behemoth turned as close to an instant answer to your prayers that you're likely to get (especially if you're praying for shoes, dish soap and pet food to appear all at once, and you asked a woman named Alexa, who lives in a little box in your home, to make it happen).

But while Jeff Bezos is a legend in the online commerce and disrupter worlds, and a famous face as a political donor and philanthropist, a Hollywood mover and shaker, and the owner of the Washington Post (or the "Amazon Washington Post," as the president of the United States likes to smear it), he hasn't become your friendly neighborhood billionaire like Warren Buffett, the face of eradicating malaria like Bill Gates or an enigmatic man in black holding the future in the palm of his hand, like the late Steve Jobs. He's even far from the most outsize personality in the race to commercialize space travel, with Richard Branson and Elon Musk battling for that title.

So where does Bezos fit into this tapestry of unique characters and unfathomable wealth?


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