Bill Gates regained the title of richest person in the world as his net worth of US$110 billion put him just ahead of Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, according to Bloomberg.
Gates, co-founder of tech giant Microsoft, reclaimed the title for the first time in more than two years as his company’s shares jump almost 50 per cent this year.
Bezos, the chief executive officer at e-commerce giant, Amazon, saw his net worth valued at US$109 billion up to closing yesterday, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Three weeks ago, Gates briefly overtook Bezos after Amazon reported a drop in its profits for the first time in three years which saw the company’s stocks drop roughly eight per cent in after-hours trading. Bezos’s fortunes however rebounded quickly against the company’s reports of increased revenue of US$70 billion for the quarter.
Microsoft beat out Amazon for a US$10 billion cloud-computing contract by the Pentagon last month, a decision which Amazon this week said it would legally challenge as the decision-making process was “marred by errors and unmistakeable bias.”
Notably, both men would have significantly greater fortunes if not for two things: Bezos divorced his wife of 25 years, Mackenzie, earlier this year which saw her become one of the wealthiest people in the world when she received a quarter of his stake in the company, valued at approximately US$34 billion.
Meanwhile, Gates has donated an estimated US$36 billion to philanthropic efforts via the foundation he has managed with his wife since 2000. The bill and Melinda Gates Foundation focuses on efforts to fund health, education and poverty alleviation work across the globe.