Jeffrey Preston Bezos (/ˈbeɪzoʊs/ BAY-zohss; né Jorgensen; born January 12, 1964) is an American entrepreneur, media proprietor, investor, computer engineer, and commercial astronaut. He is the founder, executive chairman and former president and CEO of Amazon. With a net worth of around US$135.3 billion as of July 2022, Bezos is the second-wealthiest person in the world and was the wealthiest from 2017 to 2021 according to both Bloomberg‘s Billionaires Index and Forbes.
Born in Albuquerque and raised in Houston and Miami, Bezos graduated from Princeton University in 1986. He holds a degree in electrical engineering and computer science. He worked on Wall Street in a variety of related fields from 1986 to early 1994. Bezos founded Amazon in late 1994, on a road trip from New York City to Seattle. The company began as an online bookstore and has since expanded to a variety of other e-commerce products and services, including video and audio streaming, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence. It is currently the world’s largest online sales company, the largest Internet company by revenue, and the largest provider of virtual assistants and cloud infrastructure services through its Amazon Web Services branch.
Bezos founded the aerospace manufacturer and sub-orbital spaceflight services company Blue Origin in 2000. Blue Origin’s New Shepard vehicle reached space in 2015, and afterwards successfully landed back on Earth. He also purchased the major American newspaper The Washington Post in 2013 for $250 million, and manages many other investments through his venture capital firm, Bezos Expeditions. In September 2021, Bezos co-founded biotechnology company Altos Labs with Mail.ru founder Yuri Milner.
The first centibillionaire on the Forbes wealth index, Bezos was named the “richest man in modern history” after his net worth increased to $150 billion in July 2018. In August 2020, according to Forbes, he had a net worth exceeding $200 billion. In 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic, his wealth grew by approximately $24 billion. On July 5, 2021, Bezos stepped down as the CEO of Amazon and transitioned into the role of executive chairman; Andy Jassy, the chief of Amazon’s cloud computing division, replaced Bezos as the CEO of Amazon. On July 20, 2021, he flew to space alongside his half-brother Mark. The suborbital flight lasted over 10 minutes, reaching a peak altitude of 66.5 miles (107.0 km).