Who is on the current world rich list and how did they make their money?

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Elon Musk announced in April he intended to buy Twitter outright (Brian Lawless/PA) (PA Archive)
Elon Musk announced in April he intended to buy Twitter outright (Brian Lawless/PA) (PA Archive)

According to Forbes Magazine there are an estimated 2,755 billionaires in the world.

Known for their outstanding wealth, billionaires like Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates have bank balances many of us could only dream of.

So, who are the richest people in the world, what is their net worth and how did they make their fortune?

Here’s the world’s rich list according to Forbes magazine’s real-time tracker...

1. Elon Musk - $224.7 billion

Elon Musk announced in April he intended to buy Twitter outright (Brian Lawless/PA) (PA Archive)
Elon Musk announced in April he intended to buy Twitter outright (Brian Lawless/PA) (PA Archive)

Elon Musk is the richest person in the world with an estimated wealth at present of $224.7 billion. Born in South Africa, he grew up in Pretoria before moving to America to study at the University of Pennsylvania.

His first software startup, Zip2 was bought in 1999 for $307 million and he went on to co-found Paypal, which sold to eBay in 2002 for $2.5 billion. He founded SpaceX in 2002 and runs electric vehicle maker Tesla, of which he is a shareholder.

Musk has been married twice and allegedly has eight children. His last public relationship was with singer Grimes, with whom he has two children, a son named, X Æ A-12 and a daughter called Exa Dark Sideræl.

2. Bernard Arnault & family - $147.9 billion

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

The Bernard Arnault Family has a current estimated wealth of $147.9 billion.

The 73-year old French billionaire oversees 70 of the world’s most famous fashion and beauty brands including Louis Vuitton, Tiffany & Co and Sephora.

Arnault came from a wealthy family, who owned a successful construction business. He broke into the fashion industry in 1985 after using $15 million from his father’s business to buy Christian Dior.

Currently based in Paris, France, Arnault is married to concert pianist Helene Mercier. The couple have five children, with four of them - Frédéric, Delphine, Antoine and Alexandre, working in the family business.

3. Jeff Bezos - $134 billion

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

In 1994, Jeff Bezos founded Amazon.com in a garage in Seattle, shortly after he resigned from the hedge fund giant D.E. Shaw.20 He had originally pitched the idea of an online bookstore to his former boss David E. Shaw, who wasn’t interested.21

Though Amazon.com originally started out selling books, it has since morphed into a one-stop shop for everything under the sun and is arguably the world’s largest retailer. Amazon’s pattern of constant diversification is evident in some of its unexpected expansions, which include acquiring Whole Foods in 2017 and entering the pharmacy business the same year.2223

Bezos owned as much as 16% of Amazon in 2019 before transferring 4% to former wife MacKenzie Scott as part of the divorce proceedings. In 2020, Amazon’s share price jumped 76% on the heightened demand for online shopping amid the COVID-19 pandemic. On July 5, 2021, Bezos stepped down as CEO of the e-commerce giant, becoming its executive chair.

4. Gautam Adani & family - $112.5 billion

Gautam Adani was born in the western Indian state of Gujarat. After dropping out of college as a teenager, he moved to Mumbai and worked in the diamond trade before returning to his home state.

He made his foray into global trading when he imported polyvinyl chloride, or PVC, for his brother’s plastic business. In 1988, he set up Adani Enterprises, the group’s flagship company, to import and export commodities.

Adani Enterprises gained approval from the Gujarat government in 1994 to set up a harbor facility to handle its own cargo at Mundra Port. Sensing the potential in the project, Adani decided to turn it into a commercial port. He built rail and road links to it by individually negotiating with more than 500 landowners across India to create the largest port in India. Adani got into power generation in 2009.

The billionaire was held for ransom by bandits in 1997, according to his Mundra Port website. When terrorists attacked Mumbai 11 years later, Adani was among the hostages held at the seafront Taj hotel, according to the website.

5. Bill Gates- $129 billion

Bill Gates (Jeff J Mitchell/PA) (PA Archive)
Bill Gates (Jeff J Mitchell/PA) (PA Archive)

Bill Gates is currently the fifth richest person in the world with an estimated net worth of $129 billion. Gates made his fortune through the software company Microsoft, which he co-founded with Paul Allen in 1975.

He was married to Melinda Gates for 27-years until their divorce in 2021. The pair formed the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, of which they still co-chair together.

The foundation supports global health initiatives around the world, including improving global sanitation and working to eradicate diseases such as Malaria and Aids.

It’s estimated that Gates has donated $35.8 billion worth of Microsoft stock to the Foundation and it is currently the largest private donor to the World Health Organisation.

6. Warren Buffet - $96.6 billion

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Warren Buffet is currently the sixth richest person in the world, with an estimated net worth of $96.6 million according to Forbes Magazine.

Buffet was the son of a US congressman and bought and sold his first stock at age 11, earning himself the nickname the, ‘Oracle of Omaha.’ He runs Berkshire Hathway which owns companies including Dairy Queen.

In 2006 he pledged to give away 99% of his fortune and so far has given away $45 million. Unlike many of the other billionaires on this list, Buffet still lives in the same house in Omaha Nebraska that he bought in 1958 for $31,500 before he made his fortune.

7. Larry Ellison - $93.6 billion

On the attack: Larry Ellison described HP’s claim that Mark Hurd engaged in expenses fraud as ‘not credible’
On the attack: Larry Ellison described HP’s claim that Mark Hurd engaged in expenses fraud as ‘not credible’

Ellison, 77, gets the vast majority of his wealth from his Oracle ownership, which has appreciated by about $44 billion this year, thanks to the 59% gain in the company’s stock price. But he’s made an additional fortune from a bet on Elon Musk three years ago.

Ellison disclosed in late 2018 that he’d purchased a $1 billion stake in Tesla. In the past three years, the electric car makers’ market cap has increased by almost 1,300%, and Ellison’s shares are now worth $16 billion. Even after a recent pullback, Tesla is up 44% this year.

8. Larry Page - $96.3 billion

P55 BIZGoogle chief executive Larry Page has a mystery illness
P55 BIZGoogle chief executive Larry Page has a mystery illness

Larry Page is an American entrepreneur and computer scientist who co-founded the colossal search engine company called Google.

Google has become an essential part of millions of people’s everyday lives and offers numerous internet products and services.

The super company was co-founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998 with the aim of improving people’s everyday lives and making technology readily accessible to all.

9. Sergey Brin - $92.7 billion

The majority of Sergey Brin’s fortune is derived from a stake in Alphabet, the parent company of Google, the world’s largest search engine, according to Net Market Share.

The billionaire owns both Class B and Class C shares, giving him an aggregate stake of about 6% of the business, according to a January 2022 filing.

10. Mukesh Ambani: $87.2 billion

Mukesh Ambani is the chairman and managing director of Reliance Industries (Lewis Whyld/PA) (PA Archive)
Mukesh Ambani is the chairman and managing director of Reliance Industries (Lewis Whyld/PA) (PA Archive)

The richest man in India for eight consecutive years and for a brief time in 2008 a contender for the title of richest man in the world, Mukesh Ambani is the current chair and managing director of Reliance Industries.

He is the eldest son of Dhirubhai Ambani, the founder of Reliance Industries, one of the largest private companies in India, with interests in refining, oil & gas, petrochemicals, telecom, retail and media.

Mukesh Ambani owns approximately 45% of Reliance Industries, making his net worth approximately US$ 24 billion.

Mukesh and his younger brother Anil had been jointly running the business while their father was alive. In 2005, the business was split between the two brothers, with Mukesh retaining the oil and gas business and Anil holding on to telecom, infrastructure and finance.

11. Steve Ballmer: $84.1 billion

Pointing the way: Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer
Pointing the way: Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer

Steve Ballmer is known as an influential technology business executive. He served as CEO of Microsoft Corporation from 2000 to 2014.

In 1980, Steve Ballmer joined his Harvard classmate, Bill Gates, at Microsoft. Hired as its first business manager, Ballmer was the start-up‘s 30th employee at age 24. His base salary was $50,000 and included equity in the company and a percentage of the profit growth Ballmer would generate.

Within his first year, Steve Ballmer would help Microsoft secure a contract with IBM to provide the operating system for its computers.3 Microsoft went public in March 1986.

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