For a brief moment on Tuesday September 4, a second US company joined Apple in the trillion dollar club.
Amazon share prices shot to around Ksh206,000 per share on the NASDAQ stock exchange which saw the company attain the trillion dollar valuation. (That’s Ksh100 trillion, or 100 Safaricom companies).
The electronic commerce company that prides itself in being the world’s biggest internet retailer finished Tuesday at a valuation of around Ksh99.7 trillion, just shy off the trillion dollar mark.
In turn, this moved the valuation of Jeff Bezos, the founder and CEO of Amazon, to Ksh16.7 trillion.
Bezos continues to lead the world’s billionaires list, having already become the first 100 billion dollar billionaire in history earlier this year. Second to Bezos is Microsoft founder Bill Gates, valued at Ksh9.6 trillion while legendary investor Warren Buffet rounds up the top three at Ksh8.7 trillion.
According to Forbes who curate the ranking, Amazon’s trading on Tuesday that saw it briefly hit the trillion dollar mark increased the personal fortune of Bezos by Ksh181 billion.
The rise of Bezos to become the world’s richest man has been remarkable, especially as his worth has doubled since last year.
Bezos started Amazon in 1994, in a garage in Seattle, US. Amazon went public in 1997 was listed at NASDAQ, the world’s second largest stock exchange. A year later, Bezos made the Forbes 400 list of the richest Americans.
By 2016, Bezos had made it into the top five billionaires on the planet and in 2017, he was ranked thrid behind Gates and Buffet before leapfrogging the pair in July of last year.
Amazon started as an online bookseller but now dominates retail and cloud computing services. Besides online retailing and shipping services, the company hosts websites for many of the world’s top corporations and also offers streaming services. Amazon is continuously expanding by gaining traction in other areas such as advertising, healthcare and entertainment.
Forbes magazine said of Bezos that he is “the world’s most feared businessperson” and that he is “ruthless” but at the same time, “a master of the long game.” His “greatest strength has been his ability to shape-shift Amazon into adjacent businesses on a massive scale.”
In an interview with the American business magazine, Bezos said a key element to his success is planning for the future and thus he delegates day to day operations. “I very rarely get pulled into the today. I get to work two or three years into the future, and most of my leadership team has the same setup.”
“Friends congratulate me after a quarterly-earnings announcement and say, ‘Good job, great quarter,’ and I’ll say, ‘Thank you, but that quarter was baked three years ago.’ I’m working on a quarter that’ll happen in 2021 right now.”
Bezos also comes up with a plethora of ideas. “I come up with ideas. We could sit here with an idea, and I could fill this whiteboard in an hour with 100 ideas. If I have a week with no brainstorming meetings, I complain to my office, like ‘Come on, guys, help me here.’ ”
The richest man in the world is also known to not be complacent, regularly saying that the internet is on “Day One” and therefore, Amazon, an internet company, is just getting started.
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Bezos also ranks in the top spot of The World’s Most Innovative Leaders, another list compiled by Forbes.