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MacKenzie Scott has become the richest woman in the world with a net worth of $68 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index.
Scott, the ex-wife of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, saw a surge in her wealth after shares in the technology giant increased as a direct result of the ongoing global health crisis and the restrictions put in place as a result.
Her new status comes as she added another $30.3 billion to her net worth in the last year, seeing her surpass Francoise Bettencourt Meyers as the world’s richest woman. Bettencourt Meyers and her family own 33% of L’Oreal stock.
Bezos and Scott divorced in 2019, with Scott gaining millions of shares of Amazon – worth an estimated $38 billion – in the settlement. She now owns a 4% stake in the e-commerce company.
However, Scott also has her own success story; she’s a novelist who won an American Book Award in 2006 for her book The Testing of Luther Albright, and is the founder and executive director of the anti-bullying organisation Bystander Revolution.
As well as now holding the title of the world’s richest woman, the boost to Scott’s wealth has made the 50-year-old the 12th-richest person in the world, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Since her divorce last year, Scott has donated $1.7 billion (£1.3 billion) to charitable causes, including racial equality, LGBTQ rights, public health, and climate change.
It comes after she signed the Giving Pledge upon receiving her 4% stake in Amazon – a nonprofit organisation that encourages wealthy individuals to donate at least half of their fortune throughout the course of their lifetime.
Scott is already starting to make solid headway with her promise, having donated to several organisations that are driving social change, including the Center for Policing Equity, Futures Without Violence, and One Fair Wage.
In a Medium blog post earlier this year, Scott explained her reasons behind signing the pledge, saying she ‘watched the first half of 2020 with a mixture of heartbreak and horror’ and adding, ‘What fills me with hope is the thought of what will come if each of us reflects on what we can offer.’
Scott’s former husband Bezos continues to be the richest man on Earth, just recently becoming the first person in the world to be worth $200 billion.
Unlike his ex-wife though, Bezos has come under scrutiny in recent months for not giving away enough of his vast wealth – especially considering the treatment of his workers in Amazon warehouses around the world, with some threatening strike action as a result of poor working conditions during the ongoing health crisis.
But hey, as long as the world’s richest man continues to get richer, right?
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