Elon Musk’s reign as the the world’s richest person was brief.
Tesla shares slid 2.4 percent on Tuesday, erasing $4.6 billion (roughly Rs. 33,460 crores) from its chief executive officer’s fortune and knocking him from the top spot on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index ranking.
Jeff Bezos, founder and chief executive officer of Amazon, listens during a discussion at the Air Force Association’s Air, Space and Cyber Conference in National Harbor, Maryland, US, on Wednesday, September 19, 2018. Amazon is considering a plan to open as many as 3,000 new AmazonGo cashierless stores in the next few years, according to people familiar with matter, an aggressive and costly expansion that would threaten convenience chains.
Jeff Bezos, who’d held the title for more than three years until last month, reclaimed his No. 1 position with a net worth of $191.2 billion (roughly Rs. 13,90,900 crores), or $955 million (roughly Rs. 6,950 crores) more than Musk.
Musk’s drop ends – for now – an almost six-week stint as world’s richest person that saw him front and centre in some of the biggest market events so far this year. He fanned the flames of the Reddit-driven GameStop rally and sent the shares of Etsy, Shopify, CD Projekt, and Signal Advance soaring with boosterish tweets.
Recently he’s roiled the price of Bitcoin and even Dogecoin, a lesser-known cryptocurrency that Musk spiked with a tweeted meme earlier this month. Bitcoin meanwhile blew past $50,000 (roughly Rs. 36.3 lakhs) days after Tesla revealed plans to hold $1.5 billion (roughly Rs. 10,910 crores) of the cryptocurrency on its balance sheet. Still, despite Musk’s seemingly constant social media presence, Tesla shares have slid almost 10 percent from a January 26 peak.
It’s been an eventful stretch for Bezos as well. He resumes the mantle of world’s richest person as he’s about to cede a title of his own. Amazon announced this month that Bezos will down step as CEO of the e-commerce giant in the third quarter to focus on other projects. Bezos owns space exploration company Blue Origin as well as the Washington Post and has accelerated his philanthropic giving in recent years. Amazon shares have climbed 53 percent in the past 12 months.
It may not be long though before Musk leapfrogs Bezos once again.
Musk’s SpaceX, a rival to Bezos’s Blue Origin, has been in talks to raise funds that would significantly increase its valuation. SpaceX completed the $850 million (roughly Rs. 6,180 crores) funding round last week at a $74 billion (roughly Rs. 5,38,300 crores) valuation, about 60 percent higher than its prior round, according to CNBC, which cited people familiar with the matter.