Tim Cook becomes a billionaire as Apple nears $2 trillion valuation

Apple boss Tim Cook has achieved billionaire status as the iPhone maker comes within striking distance of becoming the first ever US company to hit a $2 trillion (£1.53 trillion) valuation. 

The former chief operating officer, who took over as chief executive in 2011 following the death of founder Steve Jobs, joins a growing group of tech bosses who are enjoying increases in wealth during the pandemic.

The 59-year-old earned $125m in 2019 and owns 847,969 shares in Apple. Calculations from Bloomberg Billionaires Index based on his holdings and compensation suggest he is now in an elite club of tech billionaires.

Mr Cook said in 2015 that he plans to give most of his fortune away and has already gifted Apple shares worth millions of dollars. His wealth could be lower if he has made other undisclosed charitable gifts.

His stake is small compared with the mammoth positions of founders such as Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg who last week saw his personal wealth hit $100bn.

Apple shares are distributed widely among different investors and executives, so the world’s most valuable company has minted very few billionaires among its employees.

However, the company is on the brink of becoming the world’s first $2 trillion company after it revealed an 11pc increase in revenue to $59.7bn in the three months to the end of June, defying analyst expectations. In 2011, Apple’s valuation was $350bn. 

Shares closed 1.4pc higher on Monday at $450.91, valuing Apple at $1.93 trillion.

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