Elon Musk, the chief executive of Tesla, overtakes Amazon boss Jeff Bezos to become the world’s wealthiest person.
Musk is a major shareholder of the electric car company and has benefited from Tesla’s surging share price over the last year. CNBC estimated Musk’s wealth at $185 billion.
The distinction is the latest superlative for the South African-born Musk, who leads the aerospace venture SpaceX in addition to Tesla, which has become a pacesetter for the car industry as conventional automakers try to catch up to Tesla’s lead in electric autos.
At the start of 2020 Musk, who owns 20% of Teslsa’s shares, was the 35th richest person in the world. Tesla then had a strong 2020 as it ramped up auto production, broke ground on new factories and reported a series of profitable quarters that enabled shares to rise more than 700% during the year as it was added to the prestigious S&P 500 index.
Musk responded to the news of his status as the world’s richest person with tweets stating “how strange” and “well, back to work …”
Well, back to work …
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 7, 2021