Jeff Bezos is the second-richest person in the world, and a huge portion of that wealth comes from the company that he founded, Amazon. Amazon has gone from a small seller of books to one of the biggest retailers in the world. Amazon was the start, but not the only venture that led Bezos to his billions. He also owns The Washington Post, founded an aerospace company called Blue Origin and is building a 10,000-year clock.
Amazon started out as strictly as an online bookstore. Bezos started Amazon.com out of his garage in Seattle in 1994. After finding fast success and making millions a couple of years after its launch, Amazon expanded into selling even more products like CDs, toys and electronics.
In 2007, Amazon begun the process of releasing its own products, beginning with the release of the Amazon Kindle followed by the Amazon Fire tablet in 2011. Now, Amazon has gone far beyond just selling books, and sells everything from clothes, electronics, skincare, home decor and even food.
Amazon also has a lot of its own products and services like Prime Video, Amazon Music, Fire TV, Amazon Alexa and more.
In 2019, Bezos and his wife MacKenzie divorced after being together for 25 years. After their divorce, MacKenzie got a 4% stake in Amazon. In July 2021, Bezos stepped down as the CEO of the company and became its Executive Chairman. In 2021, he sold 8.8 billion of his stock and now owns a little under 10% of the company, according to Forbes.
Beyond Amazon, Bezos also owns the Washington Post, which he bought in 2013 for $250 million. He also has his aerospace company, Blue Origin, which he founded in 2000. According to the Blue Origin website, Bezos sees a future where "millions of people are living and working in space for the benefit of Earth." He believes that in order to preserve the earth, humans have to find new energy and material resources as well as move industries that cause a lot of stress to Earth into space.
To do this, Blue Origin is working to develop reusable launch vehicles, which will in turn, lower the cost of space travel. In July 2021, Bezos was aboard Blue Origin’s first flight to space with passengers on the New Shepard rocket, which was about a 10-minute flight. Bezos has said that the company has sold nearly $100 million worth of tickets for flights in the future so far. According to MarketWatch, Bezos spends approximately $1 billion every year to fund Blue Origin.
Another project that Bezos has under his belt is the 10,000-Year Clock. Bezos is working on building a $42 million dollar clock in Texas that, according to the 1,000-Year Clock website, is "a special clock designed to be a symbol, an icon for long term thinking." The clock will tick once a year, the century hand moves every 100 years and the cuckoo sound will come on the millennium.
So what is the net worth of one of the richest people in the world? The business that started out of a garage in Seattle has now contributed to a lot of Bezos' net worth of $182 billion, according to Forbes. He has sat at the number one spot of the Forbes Billionaire list before, but often switches with Elon Musk for the top seat. Even though he still makes a huge sum of his money from his Amazon shares, a lot of his focus these days is in Blue Origin.