How MacKenzie Scott made almost $ 6 billion final yr and ended up richer
Jeff Bezos’ former spouse is struggling to cede most of her fortune. However Amazon’s improve in stock means it has much more to supply.
MacKenzie Scott landed for the primary time Forbesrecord of the world’s billionaires a yr in the past, with a fortune of $ 36 billion in Amazon inventory that she acquired throughout her mid-2019 divorce from Jeff Bezos. She was the twenty second richest particular person on this planet and the fourth richest lady on the record.
Now like Forbes publishes our 2021 record of the richest on this planet, Scott, at 50, continues to be in twenty second. Nevertheless it’s value $ 53 billion – almost 50% greater than a yr in the past, on account of an nearly 66% improve within the worth of Amazon’s stock. And that is after setting a brand new bar for philanthropic giving in 2020 by shortly distributing $ 5.8 billion in donations to nonprofit teams. Her greater fortune makes her the third richest lady on this planet, behind L’Oreal heiress Françoise Bettencourt Meyers, who’s value $ 73.6 billion, and Walmart heiress Alice Walton, for 61, $ 8 billion.
To place Scott’s charitable giving in 2020 in context: The Invoice and Melinda Gates Basis, the biggest non-public basis in the US with a Staffing of $ 49.8 billion and 1,602 staff, made $ 5.1 billion in grants in 2019. Scott’s philanthropic effort doesn’t have its personal web site and it isn’t recognized how many individuals it employs to analysis organizations and distribute grants. She works with the nonprofit Bridgespan, which advises nonprofits and philanthropists.
Scott – who introduced that she modified her final title from Bezos to her center title in July – has not given an interview since she and Jeff Bezos divorced. However in Might 2019 she signed the Giving Pledge, a pledge to donate no less than half of her fortune to charity throughout her lifetime or after her loss of life.
In her letter Giving Pledge, she writes: “My strategy to philanthropy will proceed to be considerate. It’ll take time, effort and care. However I will not wait. And I’ll proceed till the secure is empty. Its largest problem would possibly very properly be the continued effort to empty the vault when the cash in it retains multiplying. (In March of this yr, a brand new letter from Giving Pledge appeared on the engagement web site of Scott’s new husband, Dan Jewett, a trainer on the Seattle non-public faculty his youngsters attended.)
Scott’s donations have helped 500 organizations throughout the US, together with Puerto Rico, from traditionally black faculties and universities to the nationwide non-profit Feeding America meals financial institution. “This pandemic has been a devastating burden on the lives of Individuals already in issue,” she wrote. on Medium in December as a part of her announcement that she has donated almost $ 4.2 billion to 384 organizations over 4 months: “The financial losses and well being outcomes have been worse for ladies, for folks of shade and for folks dwelling in poverty. In the meantime, [the pandemic] has dramatically elevated the wealth of billionaires.
Scott wrote that after her first main fundraising marketing campaign in July 2020, she requested her advisers to step up her philanthropy to assist these affected by the pandemic. She wished to pay “particular consideration to these working in communities dealing with excessive meals insecurity, excessive measures of racial inequality, excessive native poverty charges and low entry to philanthropic capital.”
Philanthropy is not Scott’s solely ardour. At 6, she wrote her first e book, The bookworm, a 142-page novel. She graduated from highschool a yr earlier and studied at Princeton, the place she majored in English. Her thesis advisor was Nobel Prize-winning novelist Toni Morrison. After graduating, she joined the DE Shaw hedge fund and began courting Jeff Bezos. They each left the corporate to maneuver to Seattle and begin Amazon.com in 1994. One of many first staff mentioned Forbes in 2019, Scott “did nearly every thing” to assist Amazon take off. Nick Hanauer, one in all Amazon’s early buyers, shared this opinion. “MacKenzie was an equal accomplice to Jeff within the early days,” he mentioned. Forbes in 2019.
Scott returned to his writing, nevertheless, and posted it first novel, Luther Albright’s take a look at, in 2005. Eight years later, she printed one other novel, Traps. The recluse billionaire didn’t reply to Forbes‘request for an interview.
She wrote in it December publication on Medium that she had learn many poems by Emily Dickinson: “As winter 2020 approaches, I may need anticipated one in all [Dickinson’s poems on death] to maintain floating in thoughts, however as an alternative it was his writing on Hope: ‘Hope’ is the factor with feathers,‘ it begins, ‘/ Who perches within the soul / And sings the music with out the phrases / And by no means stops – in any respect – ‘»