Mark Zuckerberg Becomes World’s Fifth Richest Person

As Facebook continues to dominate the social media landscape, investors are scrambling to buy company stock. On Wednesday afternoon, the company unveiled its latest piece of positive news, a stellar second-quarter earnings report, which showed huge gains in revenue and profitability. That announcement, released after normal trading hours, sent Facebook shares up 5% by the opening of markets on Thursday morning.

Those gains were a tremendous boon to Zuckerberg’s personal fortune. His net worth rose $3.8 billion through 11 AM Eastern Time on Thursday, sending him past Mexico’s Carlos Slim Helu to become the planet’s fifth-richest person. He is now worth an estimated $72.7 billion—a record high—according to Forbes’ real-time rankings of the world’s billionaires.

In its quarterly report, Facebook beat analyst expectations on profitability and on revenue, the ninth straight quarter it has done so. Between April 1 and June 30, total revenues were $9.32 billion, a 45% increase over last year’s second quarter. That surge was driven largely by mobile advertising. Profits also rose substantially; the company posted earnings per share of $1.32, a 69% gain from the same period in 2016.

In all, Facebook shares are up more than 50% since January, equivalent to a market cap increase of nearly $170 billion. Zuckerberg’s net worth has risen in turn; his fortune has jumped over $24 billion since January 1 . That success has come while social media rivals Twitter and Snap continue to languish on public markets.

Zuckerberg, 33, founded Facebook in 2004 as a 19-year-old student at Harvard. He later dropped out as sophomore to focus full-time on the startup. The business, which began as a small social networking platform for Ivy League universities, now has more than 2 billion monthly active users.

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