Bezos owns 11 per cent stake in world’s biggest online shopping platform; a spike in online shopping amid COVID-19 pandemic has sent its stock to a new high

 BusinessToday.In   New Delhi     Last Updated: April 16, 2020  | 10:11 IST

The coronavirus pandemic has brought good fortune to Amazon Inc founder and Chief Executive Jeff Bezos in the form of $24 billion. Bezos’ overall wealth soared as demand for online shopping sent the company’s stock to a new high. With this, Jeff Bezos’ wealth has topped $138 billion, the Bloomberg Billionaires Index says. The e-tailer boss owns 11 per cent stake in the world’s biggest online shopping platform.

As part of preventive measures against coronavirus, most countries have placed lockdown measures, giving rise to online shopping and thus a boost to revenues of companies like Amazon and Walmart. At a time when many big companies have resorted to unprecedented job cuts due to the havoc wreaked by the COVID-19 pandemic, Amazon has been on a hiring spree. The company has recently recruited thousands of workers to manage the spike in online demand.

Despite criticism over failure to ensure workplace protections amid the pandemic in the United States, Amazon’s share has risen 5.3 per cent. The company’s India unit has, however, plans to shut down its 2-hour grocery delivery app Prime Now, and all the services of the app would now be moved to the main Amazon app.

Earlier last week, Amazon resumed accepting orders for grocery essentials through Amazon Pantry service. The e-commerce company had stalled its services due to coronavirus lockdown.

Meanwhile, the total number of COVID-19 cases crossed the 12,000-mark as the country formally entered the second leg of nationwide lockdown on April 15. India’s tally has climbed to 12,380 comprising 10,477 active cases and 414 deaths, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The world tally on coronavirus stands at over 20 lakh, including 1.34 lakh deaths.

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