Everything seems to smile on him these last few days.
Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon (AMZN) – Get Free Report of which he is the executive chairman, is currently experiencing a whimsical period on all fronts.
On the professional level, he has just caught up with his rival Elon Musk in the conquest of space. NASA announced on May 19 that it had chosen Blue Origin, Bezos’ company, to build a second moon landing system, intended to bring astronauts to the surface of the Moon. The lander has been selected for the Artemis V mission, which is due to take place in 2029. It will first have to demonstrate its safety by landing on the Moon without a crew.
The amount of the contract, which is known as the Sustaining Lunar Development, or SLD, is $3.4 billion, but John Couluris, vice president of lunar transport at Blue Origin, said at a press conference that the company would itself contribute “well north” of the contract’s value as well.
Bezos’ Fortune Is Up $39 Billion
This contract erases the humiliation received in the face of Musk and SpaceX.
In 2021, NASA had chosen SpaceX to build the Artemis III lander. The contract, which is known as the Human Landing System, or HLS, amounted to $2.9 billion, while SpaceX will also contribute to the effort beyond this amount. Blue Origin, also in competition for this first contract, had filed a complaint against NASA, accusing it of having chosen a single company and not two as it had suggested.
“You cannot sue your way to the moon, no matter how good your lawyers are,” Musk said during the legal battle between Blue Origin and NASA.
The lawsuit was dismissed by the U.S. Court of Federal Claims.
Still on the professional level, Amazon also seems to have put behind its nightmarish year 2022 during which the action of the e-commerce giant fell by 49.6%. Market capitalization had fallen below the symbolic threshold of $1 trillion dollars. Those bad memories seem so far away now. The stock is up 38.4% this year, giving a market value of $1.18 trillion at last check
This stock market rebound is also beneficial to Bezos, a large part of whose personal fortune is linked to his stake in Amazon. The billionaire weighs $139 billion as of May 22, a net worth up $31.9 billion this year, according to Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
The good news is piling up on a personal level as Bezos has finally taken delivery of his superyacht after much controversy. The Koru is huge, 127 meters long and 16 meters wide. Its construction started in 2021 in the Netherlands and its value is estimated at nearly $500 million. He had caused controversy since part of the Rotterdam bridge had to be dismantled to pass the three-master. But ultimately the dismantling did not take place.
For the past few days, photos in the tabloids have shown Bezos, 59, and his girlfriend Lauren Sanchez, 53, on vacation on this yacht in Europe.
Bezos Is Engaged
In fact the trip hides a happy event. According to the New York Post, Bezos and Sanchez are now engaged. Bezos reportedly proposed to Sanchez on the Koru.
“The couple is now believed to be planning their wedding,” the New York Post wrote, citing sources close to the powerful couple.
The couple has yet to make an official announcement.
In January 2019, the founder of e-commerce giant Amazon and his wife of 25 years, Mackenzie Scott, announced to the world that they were going to divorce. The announcement was made on Twitter.
It was one of the rare moments when the public got a glimpse into the life of the man who transformed Amazon from an online bookseller into an e-commerce juggernaut.
The divorce was finalized a few months later. MacKenzie Scott received a 4% stake in the online shopping giant, worth at the time more than $38 billion. She indicated that the Amazon CEO would keep 75% of the couple’s Amazon stock, along with voting control of his ex-wife’s shares “to support his continued contributions with the teams of these incredible companies.”
The couple have four children.
At the same time, Bezos was the joy of the tabloid press. The National Enquirer had got hold of intimate photos of the billionaire. According to the Wall Street Journal at the time, there was evidence that it was Michael Sanchez, the brother of his new girlfriend, who sold the photos to the tabloid. His sister had shared these photos with him.
Since that soap opera, the photos of the Bezos-Sanchez couple have been making headlines in the tabloids. There have been photos from their vacation, images of them watching an NFL game after Amazon Prime won the rights to broadcast Thursday Night Football, images of them with other celebrities, an interview given together last year on CNN in which they spoke about the works of their charities.