Amazon’s Jeff Bezos leapfrogs Warren Buffett to become world’s second richest person behind Bill Gates

Mr Bezos is now worth $75.6bn which marks a massive $10.2bn increase so far in 2017

Josie Cox
Business Editor
Thursday 30 March 2017 14:37 BST
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Mr Bezos’ jump in 2017 is one of the biggest in the top ten
Mr Bezos’ jump in 2017 is one of the biggest in the top ten (Getty)

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has leapfrogged hedge fund veteran Warren Buffett and Amancio Ortega, the Spanish owner of a retail empire that includes Zara, to become the second richest man in the world after Bill Gates, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaire Index.

Mr Bezos, who is also the chairman and chief executive of the internet retail giant, is now worth $75.6bn (£60.6bn) – which marks a massive $10.2bn increase so far in 2017 and puts him just ahead of Mr Buffet, whose net wealth most recently stood at $74.9bn, according to the index.

Mr Gates is worth $86bn, which is up over $3.5bn so far this year and fourth-placed Mr Ortega has a total net wealth of $74.2bn, up about $2.1bn since the start of January.

Bloomberg’s list broadly mirrors Forbes, which also this month placed the Microsoft founder and philanthropist at the top for a fourth consecutive year. It put Mr Buffet, the founder of Berkshire Hathaway, second with a fortune of $75.6bn and Mr Bezos third at $72.8bn.

Like Forbes’ ranking, the Bloomberg top-ten list is also dominated by technology billionaires, including Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison.

The highest ranking woman in the Bloomberg list is French socialite and businesswoman Liliane Bettencourt, in 14th spot with a net wealth of $38.3bn. Ms Bettencourt, who is a major shareholder in cosmetics company L’Oreal, scored the same ranking in the Forbes list, though that list estimated her net wealth to be about $39.5bn.

Mr Bezos’s jump in 2017 is one of the biggest in the top ten, helped by Amazon’s solid performance in recent quarters – partially as a result of the launch of its Amazon Echo home assistant and its smaller version, Echo Dot.

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