$90.7 billion. That is Bezos’ net worth as of July 27, 2017, according to CNBC.com. According to UK’s Independent, that’s up $17.4 billion from last year. The majority of his wealth comes from his 80 million shares of Amazon, so it’s likely his wealth will continue increasing and pass the $100 billion mark.
In June, he made a request for ideas regarding a philanthropy strategy on Twitter.
He stated he is interested in “the right now”.
But as Quartz wrote in 2014, “Amazon has also been criticized for the low wages it pays to employees for the ‘soul crushing experience’ of manning its warehouses. And the company has one of the highest staff turnover rates in the tech business.”
So, why not give to his employees? They currently have about 350,000 global employees, not including seasonal or temporary workers. If Bezos reaches the $100 billion mark, that would be the equivalent of roughly $285 thousand per employee. If that seems too generous, giving each $100 thousand would still leave $65 billion.
That is life-changing money for most people. That is money that will be used to boost the economy with more spending and investments. Money for homes and education. Money for retirement or medical bills. And it’s not like the money isn’t deserved. Amazon isn’t Amazon if those 350,000 employees didn’t work there.
So it seems if one is looking to make immediate impact “right now” and one has an extraordinary amount of wealth that is only possible because of the employees one pays very little to generate that wealth, then one could simply show appreciation via increased pay or gifting stock ownership.
An act such as this shouldn’t even be considered philanthropy, simply ethical business. Businesses aren’t made via entrepreneurship alone. They’re made with labor as well. If the entrepreneur has so much money he literally doesn’t know what to do with it, then simply stop thinking of labor as resource inputs and start thinking of labor as human beings who have worked, earned, and deserve a share of the profit just as much as the entrepreneur whose idea kickstarted the organization.