Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg saw his personal wealth soar to $ 100 billion (£ 76 billion) after launching a new short-lived video feature.
On Wednesday, Facebook announced the US launch of Instagram Reels, its rival to the controversial Chinese app TikTok.
Shares of Facebook were up more than 6% on Thursday. Mr. Zuckerberg has a 13% stake in the company.
He joins Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Microsoft’s Bill Gates in the exclusive so-called “Centibillionaire Club”.
Tech leaders have recently been in the spotlight as the size and power of their companies and their personal fortunes continue to grow.
Facebook, Amazon, Apple, and Google have been among the biggest benefactors of coronavirus blockages and restrictions as more and more people shop, watch entertainment, and socialize online.
According to Bloomberg, Zuckerberg’s personal wealth has earned about $ 22 billion this year, while Bezos’s has grown by more than $ 75 billion.
TikTok Executive Order
The shortened video feature Reels, which is seen as a rival to the controversial Chinese-owned TikTok platform, works within the Facebook-owned Instagram photo-sharing app.
The launch couldn’t have come at a better time for Mr. Zuckerberg as Donald Trump issued an executive order on Thursday to address what the US president called the TikTok “threat” in the US.
So-called tech titans, including Zuckerberg, have come under increased scrutiny by US and European lawmakers for allegations that their power and influence are out of control.
The five largest US technology companies, Apple, Amazon, Alphabet, Facebook and Microsoft, currently have market valuations equivalent to about 30% of the US gross domestic product (GDP).
US Senator and former would-be President Bernie Sanders this week unveiled a plan to tax what he called “obscene wealth gains” made by billionaires during the coronavirus pandemic.
The “Make Billionaires Pay Act” would tax 60% of the increase in a billionaire’s net worth from the start of the pandemic until the end of the year.
Mr. Sanders proposes that the tax revenue earned would go to cover out-of-pocket health care expenses for Americans.
Mr. Zuckerberg has already stated that he intends to give away 99% of his Facebook shares over the course of his life through the charitable foundation he created with his wife Priscilla Chan.