Cover Tesla's Elon Musk has officially been named the second richest person alive, after Amazon's Jeff Bezos (Image: Getty Images)

The Tesla founder and electric vehicle kingpin surpassed Bill Gates with a net worth of US$136 billion, with Amazon’s Jeff Bezos still holding the top spot

According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, a daily ranking of the world’s richest people, as of this week, Elon Musk has officially moved up in ranks to become the world’s second-richest person.

The shift in ranking comes at the heels of news that Tesla shares will officially be added to the S&P 500 stock index that propelled a new wave of buying stocks in the electric vehicle company—thus nudging Musk just slightly passed Microsoft’s Bill Gates, who has a net worth of US$129.5 billion. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos retains his spot at the top.

That said, it’s important to keep in mind that Bill Gates would have an even higher net worth if it wasn’t for his philanthropic efforts. Like fellow billionaire Warren Buffet, Bill Gates had made a pledge to donate the majority of his fortune to charity—including US$100 million to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

Which is not to take away from Musk’s vast influence—aside from leading the charge at Tesla, the father of six continues holds the chairman position of the Musk Foundation, which supports research renewable energy and advocacy, human space exploration, pediatrics, and science and engineering education.

Tesla has already been named the most valuable automaker in the world, in spite of the fact that the electric vehicle marque only produces a handful of vehicles in comparison to industry leaders like Toyota and General Motors making it no surprise that the stock is still anticipated to mature further.

This year in particular has been a very good year for the Tesla CEO—not only has the stock grown by approximately 524 per cent but it resulted in an added US$100 billion to his reported wealth—a growth percentage that, according to Bloomberg, is completely unprecedented.