American media mogul, investor, and billionaire businessman Jeffrey Preston Bezos was born on January 12, 1964. He is the creator, executive chairman, and former president and CEO of Amazon, the biggest cloud computing and e-commerce corporation in the world. According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index and Forbes, Bezos had a net worth of US$160 billion as of September 2023 and was the richest person in the world from 2017 to 2021.
Bezos graduated from Princeton University in 1986 with degrees in electrical engineering and computer science. He was born in Albuquerque and reared in Houston and Miami. From 1986 to the beginning of 1994, he worked on Wall Street in a range of related disciplines. In the middle of 1994, Bezos started Amazon while driving from New York to Seattle. Since starting as an online bookstore, the business has grown to offer a wide range of other e-commerce goods and services, including as streaming audio and video, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence. Through its Amazon Web Services division, it is the largest provider of virtual assistants and cloud infrastructure services as well as the largest online sales firm, Internet company by revenue, and Internet company overall.
Blue Origin, a provider of suborbital spaceflight services and an aerospace manufacturer, was established by Bezos in 2000. He launched into space in 2021 on Blue Origin NS-16, and returned to Earth in 2015 aboard Blue Origin's New Shepard ship. Additionally, he paid $250 million for the significant American newspaper The Washington Post in 2013 and oversees a variety of other assets through his venture capital organization, Bezos Expeditions. Together with Yuri Milner, the creator of Mail.ru, Bezos co-founded the biotechnology firm Altos Labs in September 2021.After Bill Gates achieved the feat in 1999, Bezos became the second person to surpass it since then, becoming the first billionaire on the Forbes Real Time Billionaires Index, and was dubbed the "richest man in modern history" after his net worth reached $150 billion in July 2018. According to Forbes, he had a net worth of more than $200 billion in August 2020. During the COVID-19 epidemic in 2020, his wealth increased by about $24 billion.Bezos relinquished his positions as executive chairman and president of Amazon on July 5, 2021. Bezos was succeeded as CEO and president of Amazon by Andy Jassy, CEO of AWS. His net worth of $151 billion placed him second on the Forbes 400 list of the wealthiest Americans in September 2022.
Bezos, the son of Jacklyn (née Gise) and Ted Jorgensen, was born on January 12, 1964, as "Jeffrey Preston Jorgensen" in Albuquerque, New Mexico. When Jeff was born, his mother was a high school student who was 17 years old, and his father was a man who was 19 years old. Born in Chicago to a Baptist family, Jorgensen was a Danish American unicyclist. Jacklyn enrolled in night classes while carrying her infant after graduating from high school despite difficult circumstances. When he was two years old, Jeff went to an Albuquerque Montessori school.
Ted Jorgensen was broke and an alcoholic. In June 1965, when Jeff was 17 months old, Jacklyn filed for divorce and left her husband to live with her parents.
His mother wed Cuban immigrant Miguel "Mike" Bezos in April 1968 following his parents' divorce. Soon after the nuptials, Mike adopted Jeff, a young boy of four, and had his last name officially changed from Jorgensen to Bezos. Gise begged Jorgensen to stop communicating with her once she, her husband, and her son left the region.
The family relocated to Houston, Texas, when Mike graduated from the University of New Mexico so he could start working as an engineer for Exxon. From the fourth to the sixth grades, Jeff attended River Oaks Elementary School in Houston. Lawrence Preston Gise, a regional director for the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) in Albuquerque, was Jeff's maternal grandpa.Jeff spent several summers as a child at the family ranch in Cotulla, Texas, where Lawrence retired early. Later, Jeff would buy this ranch, increase its size from 25,000 acres (10,117 ha) to 300,000 acres (121,406 ha), and sell it. In order to keep his younger siblings out of his room, Jeff once modified an electric alarm. He also demonstrated scientific curiosity and technological prowess.
Bezos participated in the University of Florida's Student Science Training Program. He received the 1982 Silver Knight Award, was a National Merit Scholar, and was the valedictorian of his high school. Bezos told the crowd during his commencement address that he yearned for the time when humans would populate space. His stated goal was "to get all people off the earth and see it turned into a huge national park," according to a local newspaper.
Bezos enrolled in Princeton University in 1982 after receiving his high school diploma. Although physics was his initial major, he later changed to electrical engineering and computer science. One of Princeton's 11 dining clubs, the Quadrangle Club, belonged to Bezos. He also served as president of the Students for the Exploration branch in Princeton.
Following his graduation from college in 1986, Bezos received employment offers from companies including Intel, Bell Labs, and Andersen Consulting. At his first job, he was entrusted with creating a network for global trade at the fintech telecoms start-up Fitel. Bezos then received promotions to director of customer service and head of development. From 1988 until 1990, he worked as a product manager at Bankers Trust, making the switch into the banking sector. From 1990 until 1994, he worked at D. E. Shaw & Co., a newly established hedge fund with a focus on mathematical modeling. By the age of 30, Bezos was the fourth senior vice-president of D. E. Shaw.
Bezos made the decision to launch an online bookshop after learning that web traffic was expanding at a rate of 2300% a year in the spring of 1994. On July 5, 1994, he and his then-wife, MacKenzie Scott, quit their positions at D. E. Shaw and started Amazon in a rented garage in Bellevue, Washington. They wrote the company's business plan while driving from New York City to Seattle. The groundwork was created for this garage-run business to expand rapidly with Bezos at the helm and Scott playing a crucial role in its operation—writing checks, keeping track of the books, and negotiating the company's initial freight contracts.
Bezos looked into locating his business on an Indian reservation close to San Francisco in order to avoid paying taxes before deciding to settle in Seattle. Bezos gave his new business the name Cadabra at first, but then changed it to Amazon in honor of the Amazon River in South America. Part of the reason for this name change is that Amazon starts with the letter A, which is at the start of the alphabet. At that time, website listings were alphabetized, so when users performed internet searches, names beginning with "A" would show up more quickly. He also thought the name "Amazon," which is also the name of the world's largest river, was appropriate for what he believed would be the biggest online bookshop. He accepted his parents' projected $300,000 investment in Amazon.
The greatest amount Bezos had ever made by selling some of his Amazon stock was in May 2016, when he sold little more than one million shares of his ownership in the company. Bezos sold a further million of his shares for $756.7 million on August 4, 2016. A year later, Bezos increased employment at the company's distribution hubs, adding 130,000 more workers. His Amazon stock holdings increased to just over $109 billion by January 19, 2018, and a few months later he started selling stock to raise money for other businesses, in particular Blue Origin. He appeared in an Amazon Super Bowl commercial on January 29, 2018. With $2 billion in quarterly earnings, Amazon announced its highest-ever profit on February 1, 2018.