By Nyaboga Kiage,
An African-born man is now the wealthiest man on Earth.
Elon Musk just surpassed Jeff Bezos to become the world’s richest person following the surging of Telsa Inc.’s share price in 2021.
He is now worth $194.8 billion and is $9.5 billion richer than Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com Inc. who ranked second in Bloomberg’s Billionaire’s Index, a ranking of the world’s 500 wealthiest people.
The South-African born engineer amassed $165 billion to his wealth over the past year in what is probably the fastest growth of personal wealth in history.
Musk’s company, Tesla, saw its share price surge 743% in 2020 on account of consistent profits, inclusion in the S&P 500 Index and glee from Wall Street and investors.
According to Bloomberg, Tesla shares gained over 23,900% since the 2010 initial public offering.
The perch that Musk now occupies has only seen a handful of other people in recent history.
The 49-year-old maverick Telsa boss reacted to the news of his new status as the richest man on earth with tweets “how strange” and “well, back to work…”
Musk is a major shareholder of Tesla, an electric car company and, and leads aerospace venture, Space X. He also runs another venture called Boring, a tunneling firm.
Just two years ago, Musk was forced to step down as Tesla chairman over a controversial tweet and had to pay the US securities regulators a $20 million fine.
The offending tweet indicated that he wanted to take Tesla private.
Last year, he tweeted that he intended to sell almost all his physical possessions and told a German publisher that the main purpose of his wealth was to speed-up humanity’s evolution into a spacefaring civilization.
Often, Musk has complained of being “cash-poor” because much of his wealth is tied up in equities in Tesla and his other companies.