News of Amazon chief Jeff Bezos and wife MacKenzie Bezos divorcing sparked questions about how the split could affect the world’s most valuable company’s stock.
While there were questions, there wasn’t panic. Investors are in wait-and-see mode. The news, which came Wednesday via a tweet from Jeff Bezos, barely moved Amazon’s share price. It closed Friday at $1,640.56.
The tech bellwether’s market cap is roughly $784 billion. It has about 477 million shares outstanding. Jeff Bezos owns almost 79 million of those shares. Those shares, as well as his other assets, put his net worth at roughly $137 billion.
Reportedly, he and his wife of 25 years have no prenuptial agreement. The way their assets are split depends on the state in which they file for divorce.
If it is Washington, where they live, their assets may not necessarily be split 50-50. The state’s law provides that everything a couple builds and accrues during their marriage is community property, as Business Insider noted in its report. It added that Washington’s courts attempt to split assets (and debts), fair and equitably.
There’s also the chance that the couple drafted a postnuptial agreement to avoid negatively affecting Amazon’s stock.
Stuart Slotnick, chairman of the matrimonial department of law firm Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney, issued a statement on the matter, saying there is no reason that there should be a dispute over assets or money “because there is more than enough to be equitably distributed without either party seeing a change in their lives.”
Jeff Bezos will focus on control of his company and will likely elect to maintain the stock and voting rights in the Amazon shares over other assets.