NEWS

Bill Gates Is Still Super Rich, But No Longer The World's Richest Person

28/07/2017 6:22 AM AEST | Updated 28/07/2017 6:22 AM AEST

Once upon a time, back when Amazon only sold books, Bill Gates was the world's richest person.

To state the obvious, Amazon outgrew the book game. And as of Thursday morning, its founder Jeff Bezos has eclipsed Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates as the world's richest person.

That's thanks to Amazon's soaring value, shares of which hit $1,065.92 this morning ahead of its earnings report later today, bumping Bezos' net worth up to $90.9 billion. Per Bloomberg, Gates trails not far behind, with a net worth of $90.7 billion.

Should Amazon stock close above that magical number today, Bezos will officially replace Gates atop the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, a title Gates first seized in 1995 when the then 39-year-old's fortune hit $12.9 billion.

Gates' (first) reign as "world's richest person" came to an end in 2007, when he systematically began giving tens of billions of dollars to charity.

Bezos' wealth has soared $24.5 billion so far this year, thanks primarily to his 17 percent ownership of Amazon, which is now valued more than twice as much as all of Walmart.

Behind Bezos and Gates, Spanish businessman Amancio Ortega currently ranks as the third richest person in the world, with a net worth of $82.7 billion, followed by Warren Buffett ($74.5 billion), and Mark Zuckerberg ($70.5 billion).

What's it like being super rich? According to Gates, it's overrated.

"I can understand wanting to have millions of dollars, there's a certain freedom, meaningful freedom, that comes with that," he told students at the University of Washington in 2011. "But once you get much beyond that, I have to tell you, it's the same hamburger."

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