NEW YORK (Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc shares see-sawed on Thursday as investors questioned how the impending divorce of company founder Jeff Bezos would affect his control of the most valuable company on Wall Street and its ambitious expansion plans.
Bezos, whom Forbes lists at the world’s richest person with an estimated $136.2 billion, said via Twitter on Wednesday that he and his wife of 25 years, Mackenzie, will divorce. Amazon shares were flat in midday trading on Thursday after spending most of the morning down slightly.
Split - Question - Couple - Fortune - Percent
The split throws into question how the couple will split their fortune, which includes an approximately 16 percent ownership stake in Amazon’s roughly $811.4 billion market capitalization. Divorce laws in Washington state, where they live, hold that property acquired during a marriage is generally divided equally between spouses.
Most analysts and fund managers are largely sanguine and say the divorce will not lead to any significant change in the company’s leadership or its growth prospects.
Short-seller - Doug - Kass - Hedge - Fund
Prominent short-seller Doug Kass, however, who runs hedge fund Seabreeze Partners, said he sold his stake in Amazon on news of the divorce. That was after initially buying a stake in late December and naming Amazon among his “best ideas list.”
“Is it premature to ask what happens to Amazon when Jeff Bezos chooses to turn over the day-to-day running of the company he founded?” he said. “His announced divorce gives me pause for thought.”
Robert - Bacarella - Portfolio
Robert Bacarella, portfolio...
Wake Up To Breaking News!
Does it ever seem that life has become one long rerun?