Jeff Bezos and his wife MacKenzie have settled their divorce – and the richest man in the world got off lightly.
Jeff will keep 75 percent of their joint $144billion Amazon stake, leaving MacKenzie with just a quarter which represents a four percent stake in the company worth $35.8billion.
Jeff’s 12 percent stake is now worth around $107.5billion which allows him to retain his title as the richest man in the world, with $4billion more than Bill Gates.
He will also take voting control of his ex-wife’s remaining quarter and has been given her interest in The Washington Post, which he bought for $250million in 2013, and Blue Origin, his space travel company which he is currently investing in.
The pair announced the details in tweets on Thursday afternoon but offered no explanation as to why MacKenzie, who has helped build Amazon since it launched in 1994, will walk away with just half of what she is entitled to after 26 years of marriage.
The 48-year-old said she was ‘grateful’ that the process was over and was ‘excited’ for the ‘next phase’.
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Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos settled their divorce on Thursday. She walks away with 25 percent of their joint Amazon stake, half of what she is entitled to, worth $35billion
This was the statement Jeff issued on his account shortly after the pair reached their agreement
There was no mention of how they will divide their sprawling property portfolio or other investments but both said they were ‘grateful’ to the other for finishing the process.
Neither she nor her ex-husband made reference to his girlfriend, Lauren Sanchez, in their announcements either.
Bezos is now one step closer to being able to resume his romance with Lauren Sanchez. Her divorce is not yet final
A court approved their divorce petition after it was submitted on Thursday.
Amazon also submitted an SEC filing detailing the new shareholder breakdown.
In her Twitter statement, MacKenzie said: ‘Grateful to have finished the process of dissolving my marriage with Jeff with support from each other and everyone who reached out to us in kindness, and looking forward to the next phase as co-parents and friends.
‘Happy to be giving him all of my interest in the Washington Post and Blue Origin and 75% of our Amazon stock plus voting control of my shares to support his continued contributions with the teams of these incredible companies.
‘Excited about my own plans. Grateful for the past as I look forward to what comes next,’ MacKenzie said.
In his statement, Jeff wrote: ‘I’m so grateful to all my friends and family for reaching out with encouragement and love.
‘It means more than you know. MacKenzie most of all. I’m grateful for her support and for her kindess int hsi process and am very much looking forward to our new relationship as friends and co-parents.
THE BEZOS DIVORCE
WHAT SHE GETS
19.7million Amazon shares worth $35, 832, 724,000
WHAT HE KEEPS
59.1million Amazon shares worth $107, 472, 168,000
The Washington Post – (Bought for $250million in 2013)
WHAT IS LEFT
Homes in Seattle, Beverly Hills, California, Texas, Washington, DC, and New York City
‘In all our work together, MacKenzie’s abilities have been on full display. She has been an extraordinary partner, ally and mother. she is resourceful and brilliant and loving and as our futures unroll, I know I’ll always be learning from her.’
It was Jeff’s romance with Sanchez which brought their decades-long marriage to an end in January.
Since then, the world has waited with baited breath for the world’s most expensive divorce.
While MacKenzie’s shares payout is only half what she is entitled to, it is still 10 times more than the second most expensive divorce settlement in history.
While her estranged husband battled with American Media Inc, the media company which owns The National Enquirer and exposed his affair with Sanchez, MacKenzie has stayed silent.
She has not been seen publicly since the January news broke, whereas he attended the Super Bowl and mingled at Oscars parties.
Now, Bezos is one step closer to resuming his romance with Sanchez.
Lauren’s husband Patrick Whitesell and their son in Beverly Hills on Wednesday night. They are yet to finalize their divorce
Patrick and Lauren are shown with Bezos in 2016. He introduced his ex-wife to Bezos and they bonded over a shared love of flying
The pair have been keeping a safe distance while his negotiations with MacKenzie played out and she navigated her own divorce from her Hollywood mega agent husband Patrick Whitesell.
Despite not spending time together in person, friends said they were still ‘very much in love’.
MacKenzie and Jeff had been married for a year when he founded Amazon in 1994 as an online bookstore.
She then drove him him across the country, from their New York City home to Seattle, to attract investors.
In previous interviews, they have described how he tapped out his business plan on a laptop during that journey.
As the company grew, she worked as an accountant and helped negotiate freight deals.
She has also worked as an author.