Who are the people who managed to acquire the most wealth and assets in their time on this planet? Let’s take a look.
Only 10 people right now have more than 100 billion in net worth. A lot of these are people who own or have founded successful tech companies as well as a few savvy investors who slowly build up their net worth over many, many years.
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Co-founder and CEO: Tesla (TSLA)
Net Worth: $269 billion
Tesla Ownership Stake: 18% ($186 billion)
Other Assets: Space Exploration Technologies ($40.3 billion private assets), $4 billion in cash
Elon Musk is a billionaire who not only made his original fortune from PayPal, but then went on to help start up Tesla Motors as well as SpaceX. Let’s take a look at just how he managed this.
Elon Musk might be the inspiration for Robert Downey Jr.’s character in Iron Man Elon Musk was born in South Africa in 1971. In his childhood Musk became interested in computers and by the age of 12 he had made his own program for a video game that he sold to a computer magazine. After leaving school Musk joined college in Canada, but left after only two days, not liking the course. He then spent a year travelling around Africa before returning home to start college again at the University of Pennsylvania where he gained another degree in Physics and Economics from The Wharton School.
In 1995 Elon started work on building up Zip2 which was an online city guide for newspapers. This company was later bought out by Compaq for $307 million who decided to shut it down just 6 months later! Thankfully this gave Musk the chance to cash in shares worth $22 million from the sale of Zip2.
In 1999 Musk started X.com which was a financial services/payments company who aimed to compete with the ever increasing PayPal, but unfortunately in 2000 Compaq decided to buy out X.com so Elon cashed in again, this time worth $165 million! This gave him enough money to start SpaceX where his dream was to build cheap rockets for use by anyone, plus he wanted to help make humans an interplanetary species. Although it has only had one successful flight so far, It is still making progress .
As well as being the CEO of Tesla Motors and leading SpaceX through its early development period, Musk is also helping give solar power more attention by being Chairman of SolarCity.
In the volatile market of 2020, Tesla saw a massive increase in it’s share price. Rising over 740%, joining the S&P500 after a few attempts. These events helped push Musk to the top of the billionaire chart.
Founder and Executive Chair: Amazon (AMZN)
Net Worth: $187 billion
Amazon Ownership Stake: 10% ($162 billion)
Other Assets: Blue Origin ($9.15 billion private assets), The Washington Post ($250 million private assets), and $16.1 billion in cash.
Jeff Bezos became a billionaire overnight after Amazon’s stock price surged ahead. Learn all about Amazon here!
Jeff Bezos, the man behind Amazon, is one of the top billionaires in the world. After founding Amazon back in 1994, he steadily built his fortune up to billions. Jeff holds 10% of Amazon’s shares and currently has an estimated net worth of $ 187 billion as of December 2021 – that makes him even richer than Bill Gates.
Let’s take a look at how Jeff Bezos became so successful…
Born on January 12th 1964 in Albuquerque, New Mexico , Jeff was raised by his adoptive father alongside three older half-siblings after being abandoned by his mother at age 15 . graduated from Princeton University with Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering and computer science .
After graduating from Princeton, Jeff started his career as a financial analyst. He spent 5 years working for Wall Street firm D. E. Shaw & Co – earning their “Wall Street’s Best Mind” award during his tenure there.
In 1994, Jeff Bezos co-founded Amazon with ex-wife Mackenzie . His vision was to create an online bookstore focusing on low prices , fast delivery times and customer satisfaction!
Through the years, Amazon has grown into one of the world’s most successful businesses – making over $177 billion in net revenue each year! With this, Bezos is now the 2th richest person in 2022.
In addition to this, Jeff Bezos also founded the rocket company Blue Origin in 2000 – aiming to make space tourism a reality.
In 1993, Jeff met his wife MacKenzie through a blind date and they were married until their divorce in 2019 . The pair had four children together: three sons and one adopted daughter from China.
Jeff Bezos’ Awards and Achievements Amazingly , Forbes named Jeff as “Person of the Year” back in 1999.
And while we think that’s pretty impressive already, he has even more awards under his belt such as Time magazine’s “Most Influential Person” award for 2007 and “Businessperson of the Year Award” for 2016.
Residence: Paris, France
CEO and Chair: LVMH (LVMUY)
Net Worth: $164 billion
Christian Dior Ownership Stake: 97.5% ($137 billion total)
Other Assets: Moelis & Company equity ($24.6 billion public assets), Hermès equity (undisclosed stake), and $11.2 billion in cash3132
French national Bernard Arnault is the chair and CEO of LVMH, the world’s largest luxury goods company. This business owns some of the biggest brands on Earth, including Louis Vuitton, Hennessey, Marc Jacobs, and Sephora.
Cofounder: Microsoft Corp. (MSFT)
Net Worth: $133 billion
Microsoft Ownership Stake: 1.3% ($31.9 billion)
Other Assets: Cascade Investment LLC ($60 billion public and private assets), $56.5 billion in cash38
While attending Harvard University in 1975, Bill Gates went to work alongside his childhood friend Paul Allen to develop new software for the original microcomputers. Following this project’s success, Gates dropped out of Harvard during his junior year and went on to found Microsoft with Allen.3940
Co-founder and Board Member: Alphabet (GOOG)
Net Worth: $124 billion
Alphabet Ownership Stake: 6% ($107 billion total)
Other Assets: $14.4 billion in cash53
Like several tech billionaires on this list, Larry Page’s claim to fame got its start in a college dorm room. While attending Stanford University in 1995, Page and his friend Sergey Brin came up with the idea of improving data extraction capabilities while accessing the Internet. The duo devised a new type of search engine technology they dubbed “Backrub,” named after its ability to analyze “backing links.” From there, Page and Brin went on to found Google in 1998, with the former serving as CEO of the company until he stepped down in 2001.5455
Co-founder, CEO, and Chair: Meta (FB)
Net Worth: $124 billion
Facebook Ownership Stake: 13% ($115 billion)
Other Assets: $3.5 billion in cash64
Mark Zuckerberg first developed Facebook (now Meta) alongside fellow students Eduardo Saverin, Dustin Moskovitz, and Chris Hughes while attending Harvard University in 2004. As Facebook began to be used at other universities, Zuckerberg dropped out of Harvard to focus entirely on his growing business. Today, Zuckerberg is the CEO and chair of Meta, which had more than 2.9 billion monthly active users as of Q3 2021.
Co-founder and Board Member: Alphabet (GOOG)
Net Worth: $119 billion
Alphabet Ownership Stake: 6% ($102 billion total)
Other Assets: $14.7 billion in cash72
What makes Google unique, compared to the other companies featured on this list, is that its co-founders are relatively close in terms of total wealth. Sergey Brin’s involvement in Google follows a similar path to Page’s. After the duo founded the company in 1998, Brin served as co-president alongside Page until Eric Schmidt took over as CEO in 2001. Similarly, after founding Alphabet in 2015, Brin acted as the holding company’s president before stepping down in 2019 when Sundar Pichai took over as CEO.7374
CEO: Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A)
Net Worth: $117 billion
Berkshire Hathaway Ownership Stake: 16% ($115 billion)
Other Assets: $1.13 billion in cash78
The most famous living value investor, Warren Buffett filed his first tax return in 1944 at age 14, declaring his earnings from his boyhood paper route.79 He first bought shares in a textile company called Berkshire Hathaway in 1962, becoming the majority shareholder by 1965. He expanded the company to insurance and other investments in 1967. Now, Berkshire Hathaway is a half-trillion-dollar company, with a single share of stock (Class A shares) trading at more than $477,000 per share as of Jan. 18, 2022.
Owner: Los Angeles Clippers
Net Worth: $111 billion
Microsoft Ownership Stake: 4% ($101 billion total)
Other Assets: Los Angeles Clippers ($2.63 billion private assets), $5.03 billion in cash87
Steve Ballmer joined Microsoft in 1980 after Bill Gates convinced him to drop out of Stanford University’s MBA program. He was Microsoft’s 30th employee. Ballmer went on to become CEO of Microsoft in 2000, taking over the position from Bill Gates. He held the position until he stepped down in 2014. As part of his tenure, he oversaw the 2011 purchase of Skype for $8.5 billion.88
Ballmer owns an estimated 4% of Microsoft shares, making him the largest individual shareholder of the tech company. In 2014, shortly after stepping down as Microsoft CEO, Ballmer purchased the L.A. Clippers basketball team for $2 billion.87
Co-founder, CTO, and Chair: Oracle (ORCL)
Net Worth: $107 billion
Oracle Ownership Stake: 40% ($71.3 billion)
Other Assets: Tesla equity ($15.5 billion public assets) and $17.2 billion in cash90
After dropping out of the University of Chicago in 1966, Larry Ellison moved to California and worked as a computer programmer for several companies over the years. First, in 1973, he was an employee of the electronics company Ampex, where he met future partners Ed Oates and Bob Miner. Three years later, Ellison joined Precision Instruments, serving as the company’s vice president of research and development.
The Bottom Line
“Every morning I wake up and see if I’m on the Forbes list of the richest people. In not, I get back to work.”