Monday, December 3, 2007

The 20 Richest People in the World

Bill Gates

1. William Gates, III

Net Worth: $56.0 billion

Age: 51

Fortune: Self-made

Source: Microsoft

Country of Citizenship: United States

Residence: Medina, Washington, United States

Industry: Software

Marital Status: Married, 3 children

Education: Harvard University, drop out

After numerous delays, Microsoft visionary released latest operating system, Vista, in January. Last June announced his retirement from company he cofounded 31 years ago. The Harvard dropout who promised "a computer on every desk and in every home" now focusing time and talents on tackling diseases (hepatitis B, AIDS, malaria) in Africa, boosting America's lackluster high school graduation rate and helping women abroad start small businesses. This summer bridge buddy Warren Buffett pledged majority of his Berkshire Hathaway stock to Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation over the next 20 years, potentially doubling foundation's endowment. Sells 20 million Microsoft shares a quarter, plows proceeds into personal investment vehicle Cascade. Today more than half of net worth invested outside Microsoft.

  • Warren Buffett

    2. Warren Buffett

    Net Worth: $52.0 billion

    Age: 76

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Berkshire Hathaway

    Country of Citizenship: United States

    Residence: Omaha, Nebraska, United States

    Industry: Investments

    Marital Status: Married, 3 children

    Education: University of Nebraska Lincoln, Bachelor of Arts/Science. Columbia University, Master of Science

    Nation's most beloved investor married longtime girlfriend Astrid Menks on his 76th birthday last August. Had long promised to give away his fortune posthumously. Then last June announced he had irrevocably earmarked the majority of his Berkshire Hathaway shares to charity. At the time the gift was worth $31 billion; believed to be the largest gift in history, it will go mostly to the Gates Foundation. Son of Nebraska politician delivered newspapers as a boy. Filed first tax return at age 13; claimed $35 deduction for bicycle. Studied under value-investing guru Benjamin Graham at Columbia, learned to hunt for undervalued stocks. Bought control of textile firm Berkshire Hathaway 1965; added insurance underwriting for the investable float. Today holding company has insurance (Geico, General Re), apparel (Fruit of the Loom), utilities (MidAmerican Energy), home furnishings (R.C. Willey). Also has noncontrolling stakes in Anheuser-Busch, Coca-Cola, Wells Fargo. Despite gifts, the Oracle of Omaha is $10 billion richer than last year: Berkshire stock up 22% in past 12 months.

  • Carlos Slim Helu

    3. Carlos Slim Helu

    Net Worth: $49.0 billion

    Age: 67

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Telecom

    Country of Citizenship: Mexico

    Residence: Mexico City, Mexico

    Industry: Communications

    Marital Status: Widowed, 6 children

    Education: N/A

    The world's third-richest man is $19 billion richer this year and catching up with Americans Bill Gates and Warren Buffett thanks to a strong Mexican equities market and the performance of his wireless telephone company, America Movil. The son of a Lebanese immigrant, Slim made his first fortune in 1990 when he bought fixed line operator TelŽfonos de MŽxico (Telmex) in a privatization. Last year he spent $3.7 billion to buy the Latin American operations of Verizon Communications, expanding his empire into Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. A widower and father of 6, Slim is a baseball fan and art collector. He keeps his art collection in Mexico City's Museo Soumaya, which he named after his late wife. In recent years he has donated close to $4 billion to education and health projects, and to the revitalization of downtown Mexico City's historical district.

  • Ingvar Kamprad

    4. Ingvar Kamprad & family

    Net Worth: $33.0 billion

    Age: 80

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Ikea

    Country of Citizenship: Sweden

    Residence: Lausanne, Switzerland

    Industry: Retailing

    Marital Status: Married, 4 children

    Education: N/A

    Peddled matches, fish, pens, Christmas cards and other items by bicycle as a teenager. Started selling furniture in 1947. Now his company Ikea, which sells hip designs for the cost conscious, is one of the most beloved retailers in the world, with an almost cultlike following. Ikea, which has stores in 34 countries, continues to expand into new markets such as Chengdu, China and opened its first store in Japan last April. As egalitarian as his brand, Kamprad avoids wearing suits, flies economy class and frequents cheap restaurants. Has been quoted as saying that his luxuries are the occasional nice cravat and Swedish fish roe. Says his home is furnished mostly with his own Ikea products.

  • Lakshmi Mittal

    5. Lakshmi Mittal

    Net Worth: $32.0 billion

    Age: 56

    Fortune: Inherited and growing

    Source: Steel

    Country of Citizenship: India

    Residence: London, United Kingdom

    Industry: Manufacturing

    Marital Status: Married, 2 children

    Education: St. Xavier's College Calcutta, Bachelor of Arts / Science

    Steel titan known for his dealmaking won six-month battle for rival Arcelor. The $34 billion merger created an industry behemoth that now accounts for 10% of world's production, putting it well ahead of Japan's Nippon Steel. Mittal owns 44% of combined $80 billion (sales) Arcelor-Mittal and is its chief executive. Mittal began his career working in the family's steelmaking business in India. Today Arcelor-Mittal operations span more than 60 countries and employ 330,000. Not content to dominate the steel industry, Mittal is branching out. Among his latest deals: spent $980 million for a 50% stake in Kazakh oil firm Caspian Investment Resources, a subsidiary of Russia's Lukoil. This Londoner is the UK's richest resident.

  • Sheldon Adelson

    6. Sheldon Adelson

    Net Worth: $26.5 billion

    Age: 73

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Casinos, hotels

    Country of Citizenship: United States

    Residence: Las Vegas, Nevada

    Industry: Gambling/Leisure

    Marital Status: Married, 5 children

    Education: City College of New York, drop out

    Son of a Boston cabdriver borrowed $200 from his uncle to sell newspapers at age 12. Made first fortune in trade shows. Created computer industry's premier show, Comdex, mid-1980s; ran 70% profit margin renting space for 15 cents a square foot and leasing it to exhibitors for up to $40 a square foot. Sold show to Japan's Softbank for $862 million in 1995. Then Las Vegas: bought old Sands casino for $128 million, demolished it to build the $1.5 billion all-suites Venetian casino resort and the 1.2-million-square foot Sands Convention Center. Changed the way Vegas does business by enticing conventioneers to Sin City midweek, taking emphasis off gambling. Sold suites for $250 a night, added high-end retailers, celebrity-chef restaurants. Old guard mocked him: "I loved being the outsider. I didn't care what those guys said." Took Las Vegas Sands public December 2004. Building $1.8 billion Palazzo resort adjacent to arch-rival Steve Wynn's Wynn Las Vegas. Big bet on Asia: opened $265 million Sands Macau casino May 2004, recouped entire investment in one year. Ramping up construction on Cotai Strip: $6 billion project will place 7 hotel-casinos on Macau's 2 islands, Taipa and Coloane. Cornerstone of project will be $1.8 billion Venetian Macau. Last May won coveted Singapore gaming license. Plans to build $3.5 billion Marina Bay Sands on 51-acre site with a view of the city's skyline.

  • Bernard Arnault

    7. Bernard Arnault

    Net Worth: $26.0 billion

    Age: 58

    Fortune: Inherited and growing

    Source: LVMH

    Country of Citizenship: France

    Residence: Paris, France

    Industry: Diversified

    Marital Status: Married, 5 children

    Education: Ecole Polytechnique de Paris, Bachelor of Arts/Science

    Put up $15 million from his family's midsize construction firm to buy Christian Dior in 1985. Since then has built the world's largest luxury goods empire, LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, whose brands also include Dom PŽrignon, Fendi and Tag Heuer Still heads the company, which is expanding rapidly in China, Russia and India. LVMH recently hired Frank Gehry to design a $127 million private museum in Paris. Son Antoine, 27, joined sister Delphine, 31, on LVMH's board last year. Arnault also set up an investment fund with his good friend Albert Frere in 2006; pair own two wineries together. In December opened his four-star hotel Le Cheval Blanc in ski resort Courcheval, France, where he often spends New Year's Eve. Said to be a skilled pianist.

  • Amancio Ortega

    8. Amancio Ortega

    Net Worth: $24.0 billion

    Age: 71

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Zara

    Country of Citizenship Spain

    Residence: La Coruna, Spain

    Industry: Apparel

    Marital Status: Married, 3 children

    Education: High School, drop out

    Son of a railway worker. Ranks among world's 20 richest for first time. With help from then-wife Rosal’a Mera, got start making gowns and lingerie in his living room 44 years ago. Business became one of world's most successful apparel manufacturers, $8.7 billion (2005 sales) Inditex. Group also owns 3,000 Zara retail stores in 64 countries. Ortega is chairman. Through his investment vehicles has invested in gas, tourism, banks and real estate; has properties in Madrid, Paris, London, Lisbon, plus luxury hotel and apartment complex in Miami. Reportedly owns a horse-jumping circuit and part of a soccer league. Shuns neckties.

  • Li Ka-Shing

    9. Li Ka-Shing

    Net Worth: $23.0 billion

    Age: 78

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Diversified

    Country of Citizenship: Hong Kong

    Residence: Hong Kong, Hong Kong

    Industry: Diversified

    Marital Status: Widowed, 2 children

    Education: High School, drop out

    Asia's richest resident. His fortune is centered on conglomerates Cheung Kong and Hutchison Whampoa. Through them Li is the world's largest operator of container terminals, a major supplier of electricity to Hong Kong, a cell phone provider, retailer and real estate developer. Also has a nearly $10 billion stake in Canadian oil company Husky Energy. Recently announced plans to donate one-third of wealth over time, calling it "his third son." Eldest son, Victor, helps run massive empire; son Richard struck out on his own in early 1990s. Once a poor immigrant, Li got his start selling plastic flowers in Hong Kong in the 1950s.

  • David Thomson

    10. David Thomson

    Net Worth: $22.0 billion

    Age: 49

    Fortune: Inherited

    Source: Inheritance

    Country of Citizenship: Canada

    Residence: Toronto, Canada

    Industry: Media/Entertainment

    Marital Status: Divorced, 3 children

    Education: N/A

    Took control of family fortune after his father, Kenneth Thomson, died last June. Had already succeeded his father as chairman of Thomson Corp., media conglomerate in which the family has a 70% stake, in 2002. Grandfather Roy founded the business in 1934. Company traded away traditional printed titles in order to move into software and electronic media for professionals, like Westlaw, a legal research tool. With his brother Peter also serves as cochair of family's investment concern, Woodbridge. Well known art collectors, the family bought $5 million worth of native North American art at auction last year, including a $1.8 million face mask, the highest amount ever spent on a single piece of native North American art. David said the family bought the collection in honor of his late father.

  • Lawrence Ellison

    11. Lawrence Ellison

    Net Worth: $21.5 billion

    Age: 62

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Oracle

    Country of Citizenship: United States

    Residence: Redwood City, California, United States

    Industry: Software

    Marital Status: Married, 2 children

    Education: University of Illinois, drop out

    Brash software titan still at helm of Oracle Systems, database outfit he cofounded 30 years ago. Reshaping the industry with a massive shopping spree; spent $19 billion buying 21 software companies in past 3 years. Biggest acquisitions: PeopleSoft for $11 billion, Siebel Systems for $5.9 billion. Deals added $4.6 billion to company's annual revenue, 18,000 to employee count. Combination makes Oracle, already strong in database management, a big player in business applications like accounting and personnel. Now stitching it all together into software suite Fusion for release by 2008. Predicts earnings will grow 20% a year for the rest of the decade. Chicago native studied physics at U of Chicago; didn't graduate. Started Oracle in 1977. Took public in 1986, a day before Microsoft. Companies have been fiercely competitive ever since. Spends lots of time on distractions: tweaking his 40-acre Japanese-style estate, cruising on his 453-foot yacht, Rising Sun (world's second largest). Plans to sail in 2007 America's Cup in Spain. Turned blasŽ on being a billionaire: "Money is just a method of keeping score now."

  • Lilliane Bettencourt

    12. Lilliane Bettencourt

    Net Worth: $20.7 billion

    Age: 84

    Fortune: Inherited

    Source: L'Oreal

    Country of Citizenship: France

    Residence: Paris, France

    Industry: Manufacturing

    Marital Status: Married, 1 child

    Education: N/A

    Daughter of L'OrŽal founder Eugene Schueller, a man who is said to have a checkered past with wartime ties to the Nazi regime. Liliane has held onto a controlling stake in the cosmetics giant for more than 4 decades. Her Bettencourt Schueller Foundation supports medical, cultural and humanitarian endeavors in France and developing countries.

  • Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Alsaud

    13. Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Alsaud

    Net Worth: $20.3 billion

    Age: 50

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Investments

    Country of Citizenship: Saudi Arabia

    Residence: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

    Industry: Investments

    Marital Status: Married, 2 children

    Education: Menlo College, Bachelor of Arts/Science. Syracuse University, Master of Science

    The most active and successful investor in the Middle East is a nephew of the Saudi king. His risky bet on Citigroup in the early 1990s paid off hugely and accounts for nearly half his fortune. A plan to list shares in his Kingdom Holding Company on the Saudi stock exchange late last year was delayed by weakness in the Saudi market, which has fallen 60% since it peaked in late February 2006. The drop in value of Alwaleed's Saudi holdings was offset by gains in investments such as Citigroup and News Corp. In February 2006 Alwaleed listed Kingdom Hotel Investments, which encompasses his hotel holdings in the Middle East, on the Dubai exchange. Alwaleed loves hotels. Last year he and a partner also closed a $3.9 billion deal to buy Fairmont Hotel & Resorts and more recently he announced that, with Bill Gates, he would take Four Seasons Hotels private for $3.8 billion, including debt.

  • Mukesh Ambani

    14. Mukesh Ambani

    Net Worth: $20.1 billion

    Age: 49

    Fortune: Inherited and growing

    Source: Petrochemicals

    Country of Citizenship: India

    Residence: Mumbai, India

    Industry: Manufacturing

    Marital Status: Married, 3 children

    Education: University of Bombay, Bachelor of Arts/Science. Stanford University, Master of Business Administration

    Snatched title of India's richest resident from Azim Premji. Since splitting with younger brother Anil in 2005 and taking control of $20 billion (revenues) Reliance Industries, founded by his late father Dhirubhai Ambani, fortune has soared by $11 billion. Oil-refining subsidiary Reliance Petroleum, in which Chevron has 5% stake, listed May 2006. Betting $5.5 billion on retail ventures including Reliance Fresh, a chain of food stores; 60 are now open. Megaplans include $10 billion investment to develop special economic zones. Recently got board approval to hike personal stake in Reliance Industries from 44% to 48%.

  • Karl Albrecht

    15. Karl Albrecht

    Net Worth: $20.0 billion

    Age: 87

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Aldi

    Country of Citizenship: Germany

    Residence: Mulheim an der Ruhr, Germany

    Industry: Retailing

    Marital Status: Married, 2 children

    Education: N/A

    Germany's richest man. After World War II Karl and his younger brother, Theo, developed their mother's corner grocery store into discount supermarket giant Aldi, which now has more than 7,000 stores and $49 billion in sales. They eventually split ownership and management of the chain into North and South regions. Now retired, Karl used to manage more profitable southern half of Aldi's business in Germany. Fiercely private: Little known about him other than that he apparently raises orchids and plays golf.

  • Roman Abramovich

    16. Roman Abramovich

    Net Worth: $18.7 billion

    Age: 40

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Oil

    Country of Citizenship: Russia

    Residence: London, United Kingdom

    Industry: Oil/Gas

    Marital Status: Married, 5 children

    Education: Drop out

    Orphaned as a child, Abramovich dropped out of college, then made a fortune in a series of controversial oil-export deals in the early 1990s. His fortune took off in 1995 when he teamed up with Boris Berezovsky to take over oil giant Sibneft at a fraction of its market value. (When Berezovsky fled Russia in 2000 to escape fraud charges, he sold out to Abramovich.) In 2003 to 2004 sold his stake in Russian Aluminum to Oleg Deripaska. In Fall 2005 liquidated his biggest asset, selling his 72.6% stake in Sibneft to Gazprom for $13 billion. Last year got back to business in Russia, buying a stake in the country's largest steel maker Evraz Group. Sent a letter of resignation to Vladimir Putin, asking to be relieved of the post of governor of the remote northern province of Chukotka, where he has raised living standards and earned a set of passionate supporters; Putin refused. He's reportedly building a private hospital in Moscow.

  • Stefan Persson

    17. Stefan Persson

    Net Worth: $18.4 billion

    Age: 59

    Fortune: Inherited and growing

    Source: Hennes & Mauritz

    Country of Citizenship: Sweden

    Residence: Stockholm, Sweden

    Industry: Retailing

    Marital Status: Married, 3 children

    Education: University of Stockholm, Associate in Arts/Science

    Has run Swedish retailer Hennes & Mauritz, founded by his father, for 25 years. The hip clothing chain now has 1,300 stores in 24 countries. It plans to open its first stores in Hong Kong and Shanghai in 2007. Member of the board of the Mentor Foundation, which fights youth substance abuse and whose trustees include the Queen of Sweden and Queen Noor of Jordan. Enjoys downhill skiing, tennis and golf.

  • Anil Ambani

    18. Anil Ambani

    Net Worth: $18.2 billion

    Age: 47

    Fortune: N/A

    Source: Diversified

    Country of Citizenship: India

    Residence: Mumbai, India

    Industry: Diversified

    Marital Status: Married, 2 children

    Education: University of Bombay, Bachelor of Arts/Science. University of Pennsylvania Wharton School, Master of Business Administration

    Feud with older brother Mukesh led brothers to split up family fortune, created by late father Dhirubhai Ambani, in 2005. While Mukesh got Reliance Industries and Reliance Petroleum, Anil took over family's telecom, finance and power interests. Net worth has surged by more than $12 billion in past year, thanks in part to 2006 listing of telecom operator Reliance Communications, of which he holds 66%. Lost out to Vodafone in race to acquire Hutchison Whampoa's 67% stake in Hutchison Essar, India's third-largest mobile phone operator. Is a marathon runner; wife Tina, a former Bollywood actress, is a patron of contemporary Indian art.

  • Paul Allen

    19. Paul Allen

    Net Worth: $18.0 billion

    Age: 54

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Microsoft, investments

    Country of Citizenship: United States

    Residence: Mercer Island, Washington, United States

    Industry: Software

    Marital Status: Single

    Education: Washington State University, drop out

    Former Microsoft geek added considerable luster to jock credentials when his NFL Seattle Seahawks went to the Super Bowl in 2006; this year made it to the second round of the playoffs. Hoops proving less rewarding: underperforming Portland Trail Blazers losing Allen millions. Recently abandoned efforts to sell NBA franchise. Losing ground on World's Billionaires rankings, but should have ranked lower all along: Our previous net worth estimates failed to account for high levels of debt, other investment losses following burst of tech bubble. Teamed up with high school friend Bill Gates 1975 to start computer company. Left Microsoft after bout with Hodgkin's disease 1983; retained more than a quarter of company's stock. Selling ever since. Invests proceeds through personal holding company Vulcan Inc.; owns dozens of stakes in media, technology, biotech. Also oil: bought energy outfit Plains Resources for $460 million 2004. Along with founding partners Jeffrey Katzenberg, David Geffen and Steven Spielberg made a few hundred million selling off DreamWorks. Remains chairman of onetime cable darling Charter Communications. Devotes majority of time to philanthropy (medicine, education), socializing. Toys include Octopus, a 413-foot yacht that contains 2 helicopters and a 60-foot submarine; large collection of vintage military aircraft.

  • Theo Albrecht

    20. Theo Albrecht

    Net Worth: $17.5 billion

    Age: 84

    Fortune: Self-made

    Source: Aldi, Trader Joe's

    Country of Citizenship: Germany

    Residence: Foehr, Germany

    Industry: Retailing

    Marital Status: Married, 2 children

    Education: N/A

    After World War II Theo and his older brother, Karl, transformed their mother's corner grocery store into discount supermarket giant Aldi, which now has more than 7,000 stores and $49 billion in sales. They eventually split ownership and management of the group into North and South regions. Theo still manages Aldi's less profitable northern chain with the help of his 2 sons. In the U.S. owns gourmet food retailer Trader Joe's and a stake in Supervalu Inc. After being kidnapped for 17 days in 1971 has shunned the limelight. Little is known about him, though rumor has it that he is very thrifty, collects old typewriters and loves to golf.

http://www.boomj.com/?page=finance/20RichestPeople

3 comments:

bunty said...

hare krishna

SEO Services Consultants said...

Nice information, many thanks to the author. It is incomprehensible to me now, but in general, the usefulness and significance is overwhelming. Thanks again and good luck! Web Design Company

rocky case said...

Stephen Stapinski

Really your blog is very interesting.... it contains great and unique information. I enjoyed to visiting your blog. It's just amazing.... Thanks very much for the share.