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It’s official, Elon Musk is now the third richest person in the world.

This comes after the South African born entrepreneur's net worth has reached $115 billion – about R2 trillion. Yes, that’s right, almost R2 trillion.

The Bloomberg Billionaires Index is a ranking of the world's richest people, and has placed Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, in second place, with Amazon’s Jeff Bezos still in first place as the richest person in the world.

Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, is now in fourth place.

Musk has founded several successful companies over the years, but the one responsible for his enormous wealth growth during the last year is Tesla – the electric vehicle manufacturing company based in California.

CNN reports that Musk doesn't earn a salary or bonus, instead he gets paid in millions of stock options, worth billions of dollars. He receives his payouts as the company hits certain profit and stock price thresholds. He has already received two multi-billion-dollar payouts as is due to receive another one soon.

The Pretoria Boys High alumni owns more than 18% of the company's shares, that's more than three times that of the next-largest stockholder.

Tesla is worth almost R9 trillion, and its stock price went up by around 500% in 2020 – the main reason for the 49-year-old's jump on the Billionaires Index.

Musk was recently in the news after one of his other companies, SpaceX, successfully took two of NASA's astronauts to the International Space Station and back. The first privately owned company to do so.

While Musk now permanently resides in the United States, he still holds his South African citizenship, as well as Canadian citizenship which he acquired at birth thanks to his Canadian mother and former model, Maye Musk.

Watch the Bloomberg Technology video below for more on Elon Musk's rise to become the third richest person in the world.

Image credits: VOX and The Guardian

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