Layne is an active freelance writer. She enjoys staying up-to-date on trends, media, and emerging topics.
The World's Billionaires List
Jeff Bezos is the richest person in the world, but billionaires abound, and they can be found all over the world. From the fashion industry to the tech industry, the life stories of the richest people in the world all vary. Some come from nothing and worked their way up—others got a helping hand. Find out how the richest of the rich acquired their wealth, just how much they're worth, and what they are doing with their money.
Top 10 Richest People in the World
- Jeff Bezos: Net Worth $113 Billion
- Bill Gates: Net Worth $98 Billion
- Bernard Arnault Family: Net Worth $76 Billion
- Warren Buffett: Net Worth $67.5 Billion
- Larry Ellison: Net Worth $59 Billion
- Amancio Ortega: Net Worth $55.1 Billion
- Mark Zuckerberg: $54.7 Billion
- Carlos Slim Helú: Net Worth $52.1 Billion
- Larry Page: $50.9 Billion
- Michael Bloomberg: $48 Billion
How Many Billionaires Are There in the World?
According to a Forbes report released March 2020, there are 2,095 billionaires worldwide—people with a billion US dollars. They have a combined net worth of $8 trillion.
1. Jeff Bezos: Net Worth $113 Billion
Jeff Preston Bezos is the founder of Amazon.com. He was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and graduated from Princeton. He started the online retailer, Amazon, out of his garage in Seattle just after he had resigned from D.E. Shaw. He had apparently proposed the original company idea—an online bookstore—to David E. Shaw but it was passed up. The company went public in 1997 and has since become the largest online retailer.
Amazon has since acquired Whole Foods and has been working on offering over-the-counter brand-name drugs to consumers. Jeff Bezos remains CEO with 16% ownership. He owns The Washington Post and an aerospace manufacturer, Blue Origin.
2. Bill Gates: Net Worth $98 Billion
It's well known that William Henry Gates is a Harvard dropout, but as the co-founder of Microsoft Corporation, he comes in as the second wealthiest person in the world. Fortunately for the less fortunate, he's been quite the philanthropist. He and his wife chair the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation—donating funds to improve global health. In 2014, he pledged $50 million to fight Ebola. He currently owns just 1% of shares in Microsoft and remains a board member.
Bill Gates was born in Seattle, Washington, and launched Microsoft with his childhood friend Paul Allen. He is known as the most famous personal computer entrepreneur in the world.
3. Bernard Arnault Family: Net Worth $76 Billion
Bernard Jean Étienne Arnault is the chairman and CEO of LVMH (LVMH Moët Hennessy)—provider of luxury goods. He is a French national. The company owns Louis Vuitton, Dior, Sephora, Marc Jacobs, Hennessey, and 70 luxury brands in total. His daughter is the executive Vice President of Louis Vuitton.
After his father generated wealth from his work in manufacturing as the owner of Ferret-Savinel, a civil engineering company, Bernard bought Christian Dior in 1985 for $15 million. He has invested in a variety of companies.
4. Warren Buffett: Net Worth $67.5 Billion
Warren Edward Buffett is one of the most famous investors and philanthropists to date. He is the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway. He was born in Omaha, Nebraska, and graduated from Columbia Business School. He has backed major companies like Geico, Duracell, restaurant chains, and some 60+ others. He filed his first tax return at age 14 and itemized his newspaper delivery bike; he also purchased shares in Berkshire Hathaway in 1962.
Buffett is incredibly generous and has donated huge portions of his earnings to charitable causes—launching the Giving Pledge with the Gateses. Buffett made campaign contributions to President Barack Obama.
5. Larry Ellison: Net Worth $59 Billion
Larry Ellison co-founded Oracle Corporation in 1977. He was born in New York City to a single mother; he was later given up for adoption to his aunt and uncle. Ellison did not meet his biological mother until he reached the age of 48. He studied at University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign and dropped out after his second year. He moved to Berkeley, CA, at 22.
He worked for Ampex and was exposed to relational database design. From there, he formulated Oracle 2 in 1979. Ellison took on the role of CEO of Oracle in 2014; in 2016, Oracle acquired Netsuite in an advancement towards cloud computing. He purchased 3 million Tesla shares in 2018 and is currently a director on the board. In 2010, he signed "The Giving Pledge" as one of 40 billionaires.
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6. Amancio Ortega: Net Worth $55.1 Billion
Amancio Ortega Gaona is the wealthiest retailer in the world—co-founding Inditex fashion group (Zara—first opened in 1975, Massimo Dutti, Pull&Bear, Berksha, Stradavarius, Tempe, and an estimated 7,500 others). He largely invests in real estate worldwide. He is considered the wealthiest person in Europe.
Ortega was born in Busdongo de Arbás, León, Spain. His father was a railway worker, and he dropped out of school when he was 14 years old. He learned how to make clothing by hand while working for a shirtmaker. Amancio is extremely avoidant of publicity.
7. Mark Zuckerberg: $54.7 Billion
Mark Elliot Zuckerberg was born in White Plains, New York, in 1984. He attended Harvard and dropped out in his sophomore year, in 2004, when he started Facebook with roommates Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz, and Chris Hughes. In his second year of school, he programmed Facemash, where students could vote on the most attractive person. Harvard shut Facemash down because it hacked into the school's system to get the photos.
Based on the success of Facemash, Zuckerberg launched a site called thefacebook.com. Days later, three seniors, Cameron Winklevoss, Tyler Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra claimed that Zuckerberg used their ideas to launch "thefacebook." The Winklevoss twins sued Zuckerberg in a case which was settled in 2008. The company went public in 2012. In April 2018, it was revealed that Facebook had shared user data with Cambridge Analytica, which used it to build a system to target US voters with political ads; this gave rise to questions about Facebook's privacy policies and political power.
8. Carlos Slim Helú: Net Worth $52.1 Billion
Carlos Slim Helú is a Mexican national who was born in Mexico City in 1940. He is an investor, engineer, and philanthropist. He and his family control America Movil, which is the largest mobile telecom firm; he bought stake in Telmex in 1990. His investing did not stop there via his conglomerate, Grupo Carso. Since, he invested in consumer goods, real estate development, The New York Times, mining, construction, etc. He is the richest man in Latin American.
9. Larry Page: $50.9 Billion
Larry Page operates Alphabet (Google), Calico (healthcare), and Nest. He cofounded Google in 1998 with Sergey Brin—they met while attending Stanford University. They were both interested in computer science. Page invented the PageRank algorithm of search engines used by Google.
Alphabet, the multinational conglomerate, is located in Mountain View, California. It is the parent company of Google, which is considered one of the most valuable companies in the world.
10. Michael Bloomberg: $48 Billion
Michael Rubens Bloomberg is the co-founder and owner of Bloomberg LP, a financial information/media company that was established in 1981. He was born in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1942 and attended John Hopkins University and Harvard Business School. He began working on Wall Street for Salomon Brothers and got layed off 15 years later.
Bloomberg has joined The Giving Pledge: "an open invitation for billionaires, or those who would be if not for their giving, to publicly commit to giving the majority of their wealth to philanthropy", donating billions of dollars to environmental, gun control (Bloomberg donated 38 million to Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund in 2018), and public health causes. He also pledged millions of dollars against the 2020 Trump campaign.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2019 Laynie H
What Should They Do With Their Money? (Share Your Thoughts Below)
James Nelson on June 10, 2020:
They should try to help out and reach out the needy in communities of Africa. There are many bright kids here but have no access to quality education
nona shanaz. on April 30, 2020:
We want money to live. I have 3 children. Our coutry is lock down. We cant go out n earn mony. 2 months we stay home. Plz help us
Laynie H (author) from Bend, Oregon on November 07, 2019:
Hi Conscious Dreamer—I like that you found this read interesting. I agree with you about eliminating poverty. Currently, some of the larger companies have been donating funds to reduce the housing crisis in certain areas of the US where homelessness is a big issue . . . but then they are building studios that cost 3k USD. It's not helping. Given that most people are living on the equivalent of 1 USD a day around the world—you are right.
Laynie H (author) from Bend, Oregon on November 07, 2019:
Hi Dora, thank you for the read. I felt compelled to write about this because I was curious to know more about some of the major tech companies. Interesting to learn that the fashion industries are booming too.
Rêveuse Consciente from Pakistan on November 07, 2019:
I think they should use their money to eliminate poverty. Your list is well researched and informative one.
Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on November 06, 2019:
Thanks for sharing this interesting information. Don't know that I ever had to write or read these numbers. Outstanding creativity!