Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.
 / Updated 
By David K. Li

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced Wednesday he and his wife are seeking a divorce.

The powerful business executive said on Twitter he and his wife, MacKenzie, have already separated. The two were married in 1993 and have four children.

"We want to make people aware of a development in our lives. As our family and close friends know, after a long period of loving exploration and trial separation, we have decided to divorce and continue our shared lives as friends," he tweeted.

“We feel incredibly lucky to have found each other and deeply grateful for every one of the years we have been married to each other. If we had known we would separate after 25 years, we would do it all again. We've had such a great life together as a married couple, and we also see wonderful futures ahead, as parents, friends, partners in ventures and projects, and as individuals pursuing ventures and adventures. Though the labels might be different, we remain a family, and we remain cherished friends.”

The couple first met in 1992 when MacKenzie Tuttle was working at hedge fund D.E. Shaw.

Together they've become prolific philanthropists. Four months ago they announced the formation of a $2 billion effort, the "Day One Fund," reaching out to homeless families and creating preschools.

Also last year, the couple donated $33 million to help pay college tuition of "Dreamers" — young people brought to the U.S. by their undocumented immigrant parents.

Bezos, the world's richest man, founded the company in 1994, originally selling books, before becoming one of the world’s most prominent retailers.

Forbes last year estimated his worth at $112 billion, topping other financial titans such as Microsoft founder Bill Gates ($90 billion), investment guru Warren Buffet ($84 billion), luxury brand owner Bernard Arnault ($72 billion) and Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg ($71 billion).

Bloomberg pegged Bezos' wealth at $137 billion.

Amazon opened trading on Wednesday at $1,652.98 a share, with a 52-week high of $2,050.50.

In an interview published last year in Business Insider, Bezos credited MacKenzie for supporting his risk-taking vision of Amazon.

"MacKenzie, you know, she had married this stable guy working on Wall Street, and a year after we got married, I went to her and said I wanted to quit my job, move across the country and start this internet bookstore. And MacKenzie, of course, like everybody I explained this to, her first question was: 'What's the internet?' Because nobody knew. This was 1994," Bezos said.

"But even before she could say 'What's the internet?' she said, 'Great — let's go!' Because she wanted to support it and she knew that I had always had this passion for invention and starting a company."

Bezos' portfolio includes the Washington Post, making him one of President Donald Trump's favorite targets. The president has regularly accused Bezos of unfairly using the U.S. Postal Service as his "Delivery Boy" for Amazon products.