Published: Fri, January 11, 2019
Economy | By

Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos divorces wife

Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos divorces wife

Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos and wife MacKenzie Bezos have chose to divorce after a long trial separation, Mr Bezos said yesterday in a joint statement by the couple on Twitter.

The couple chose to divorce after a long period of "loving exploration" and trial separation, and expect to continue as partners in joint ventures and projects, according to the statement.

The couple, who have four children, met while working at the hedge fund DE Shaw prior to Bezos's founding of Amazon.

One year later he founded Amazon - which began as an online book retailer.

Enquirer and New York Post, both reported that Bezos was in a relationship with Lauren Sanchez, a former TV anchor.

Bezos is now considered to be the richest man in the world, with a net worth of $137.4 billion, meaning the cost of their divorce could prove to be one of the most expensive splits of all time.

The divorce could reshape the wealth rankings. If MacKenzie Bezos receives an even split of the fortune, she will rank as the world's richest woman.

He topped the chart with an estimated worth of $US160 billion, ahead of Microsoft founder Bill Gates, who was found to have $US97 billion.

The couple has lived in Seattle since 1994. In Washington, the minimum length of a divorce case is 90 days, and a typical case takes up to six months or longer, according to Washington-based family law firm McKinley Irvin.

Also left unanswered is one of the biggest sticking points in any divorce: How the assets amassed during the marriage will be divided. While Oracle Corp.'s Larry Ellison has been through multiple divorces, none has affected his stake in the software maker.

Oil industry magnate Harold Hamm's separation from Sue Ann Arnall was far messier.

Entertainment news site TMZ, citing sources linked to Ms Sánchez, said the presenter has been "seeing" Mr Bezos as of late a year ago.

But a lot also depends on if the couple has signed a prenuptial agreement.

But the Bezos divorce seems likely to attract more attention than when Google co-founder Sergey Brin - now worth $49bn - divorced his former wife Anne in 2015. "You need to filter their public comments through that lens".

A stockholders agreement stipulated they would vote jointly on company matters, including stock sale, but Elaine filed court documents in 2016 to get control of her shares after she was voted off the Wynn Resorts' board of directors.

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