Jeff Bezos could buy all of Amazon’s inventory, and then buy all of Boeing’s and Walmart’s too

Hey big spender.
Hey big spender.
Image: AP/Dennis Van Tine
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Ever been on Amazon and balked at the price of something? Jeff Bezos can’t relate.

Not only could Bezos afford to buy anything on Amazon without blinking an eye, he could quite literally buy the entire inventory of the company he founded. According to Amazon’s financial results for the second quarter of 2018, the company estimates it holds about $14.8 billion in inventory. That includes all the merchandise in Amazon’s warehouses, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars in merchandise that the company expects will be returned. Jeff Bezos’s net worth is currently $157 billion, according to Bloomberg, more than 10 times greater than the value of his company’s inventory.

The companies with the most valuable inventory are not necessarily the most valuable companies. Apple, the company with the biggest market capitalization in the world, only reported $6 billion in inventory in the second quarter of 2018. Yet Apple had higher sales than Amazon in that quarter because it is able to sell and replace a simpler range of merchandise at a faster pace.

With the money left after purchasing all of Amazon’s inventory—and, why not, Apple’s too—Bezos could also buy the inventories of Boeing, Walmart, and General Electric, the three S&P 500 companies with the greatest inventory values at the end of 2017. Or, rather, he could buy all the merchandise currently held by Amazon’s top 10 retail competitors, as ranked by the value of their inventory: Walmart, CVS, Home Depot, Lowes, Costco, Walgreens, Target, Kroger, Best Buy, and Macy’s.

With additional reporting by Dave Edwards