Elon Musk’s year of dizzying ascents hit a new apex Monday as the Tesla Inc. co-founder passed Bill Gates to become the world’s second-richest person.
The 49-year-old entrepreneur’s net worth soared $7.2 billion to $127.9 billion, driven by yet another surge in Tesla’s share price. Musk has added $100.3 billion to his net worth this year, the most of anyone on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, a ranking of the world’s 500 richest people. In January he ranked 35th.
His advance up the wealth ranks has been driven largely by Tesla, whose market value is approaching $500 billion.
About three-quarters of his net worth is comprised of Tesla shares, which are valued more than four times as much as his stake in Space Exploration Technologies Corp., or SpaceX.
Musk’s milestone marks only the second time in the index’s eight-year history that Microsoft Corp. co-founder Gates has ranked lower than number two. He held the top spot for years before being bumped by Amazon.com Inc. founder Jeff Bezos in 2017. Gates’s net worth of $127.7 billion would be much higher had he not donated so prodigiously to charity over the years. He has given more than $27 billion to his namesake foundation since 2006.
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