While up to 40 percent of the world’s top 100 billionaires saw their wealth contract due to the COVID-19 epidemic, owners of e-retailers such as Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Pinduoduo founder Huang Zheng have seen their net worth increase because of a spike in business over the past four months ending May 31, according to the latest report from the Hurun Research Institute.
According to the Shanghai-based institute, Bezos saw his personal wealth grow by $20 billion to $160 billion over the four months. In the same period, Amazon’s stock price surged 21.6 percent.
Meanwhile, Huang Zheng, founder and CEO of the Chinese budget e-commerce site, added $18 billion to his coffers to achieve a net worth of $35 billion.
Yuan Zheng, 50, founder and CEO of video conferencing application Zoom, also saw his wealth triple to $13 billion by the end of May.
In the four months since the outbreak, 40 percent of the world’s 100 richest people recorded by Hurun saw their wealth shrunk, while the majority 60 percent saw their wealth increase or remain unchanged, said Rupert Hoogewerf, chairman and chief researcher of Hurun.
“While the first two months of the outbreak saw a massive wealth wipeout of the Hurun Global Top 100, the second two months saw a V-shaped recovery for two thirds of the Hurun Global Top 100, reminding us that it is dangerous to bet against the world’s best wealth creators,” he said.
CEO of luxury giant LVMH Bernard Arnault and investment guru Warren Buffet both saw their personal net worth dip by $18 billion, the biggest loss recorded during the four months, according to the report.