Today was an incredibly monumental day for Amazon.com. Today was the first day in company history that it was headed by a CEO not named Jeff Bezos. Today was Andy Jassy's first day at the helm of the eCommerce/technology/streaming/grocery behemoth. Perhaps as a sign of good things to come, on Andy's very first day Amazon stock hit an all-time high. Amazon ended the day up 4.7% at a price per share of $3,675.74. The stock is up another $3 per share in after hours trading. Not a bad first day for Andy!
It was also not a bad day Jeff Bezos. But when is there ever a bad day for Jeff Bezos?
Amazon's share price jump came on the heels of an announcement from the Pentagon. Earlier Tuesday the Department of Defense announced it was canceling a $10 billion cloud contract called JEDI that it had previously awarded to Microsoft exclusively. Microsoft was awarded the contract in 2019. Amazon, which most analysts expected to be the winner, immediately alleged foul play. Specifically, that Donald Trump actually intervened to make sure that Microsoft won the contract over Amazon due to the former President's hatred of Jeff Bezos.
Jeff Bezos is now laughing all the way to the bank.
When Amazon's share price hits an all-time high, Bezos' net worth ALSO hits an all-time high. As I type this article, Jeff Bezos' net worth is…
He is now exactly $30 billion richer than Elon Musk, whose $181 billion net worth places him second.
Ohh, but what could have been…
How Rich Would Jeff Bezos Be Had He Never Gotten Divorced?
Jeff Bezos and MacKenzie Scott were married from 1993 to 2019.
At his peak before numerous stock sales and the eventual divorce settlement, Jeff owned 80 million shares of Amazon.
Immediately before he and ex-wife MacKenzie announced their divorce, Jeff's net worth was $150 billion.
In April 2019 they reached a settlement which called for Jeff to give MacKenzie 19.7 million shares of Amazon. The value of those shares at the time of transfer was $36 billion. After their settlement, Jeff's net worth was reduced from $150 billion to $114 billion and MacKenzie instantly became one of the richest women in the world.
Had Jeff and MacKenzie never divorced, there's a very real scenario where today Jeff could still own 80 million shares of Amazon. At today's all-time high of $3,675.74, those 80 million shares would be worth…
An absolutely incomprehensible number, but that's not where it ends.
Jeff owns several billion dollars worth of investments in other companies. For example, Jeff was one of the earliest investors in a pre-IPO Google. Today he owns at least $1 billion worth of Google shares. He also owns early stakes in AirBnB, Uber and a dozen other tech ventures.
He owns a valuable portfolio of real estate, several private jets and The Washington Post.
Trigger warning. The following sentence might make you sick.
Had Jeff Bezos never gotten divorced, today his net worth would be…
Would that have made him the richest human being in modern history?
Even at $300 billion, Jeff would be $10 billion shy of Andrew Carnegie ($310 billion – after accounting for inflation) and $40 billion shy of John D. Rockefeller ($340 billion).
Congrats to Jeff and Amazon for your respective all-time highs!
[Disclosure: I own some shares of Amazon stock in a retirement account.]