Reality TV star Kylie Jenner has become the world’s youngest billionaire at the age of just 21.
According to the latest list of billionaires compiled by Forbes, the youngest member of the Jenner-Kardashian family has joined the “nine-zero” club, The Guardian says.
She is one of 195 newcomers to join the list this year, which is once again dominated by tech entrepreneurs, who make up half of the world’s top ten billionaires.
Amazon’s founder and chief executive Jeff Bezos retained the top spot as the richest person on Earth.
According to Forbes, he is now worth an estimated $131bn, $19 billion more than a year ago, despite his pending divorce.
The magazine notes that China has 49 fewer billionaires than a year ago, with Europe, the Middle East and Africa also losing ground. Meanwhile, the Americas, “driven by a resurgent Brazil and the US”, are the only two regions with more billionaires than they had a year ago.
There are now a record 609 in the US, including 14 of the world’s 20 richest people.
Here are the world’s top ten billionaires:
- Jeff Bezos, $131bn
The former hedge fund manager turned online book seller started Amazon in his garage in 1994. He still owns 16% of the e-commerce colossus which has seen its share price rise nearly 500% in the past five years.
Bezos has invested heavily in space technology and also owns The Washington Post newspaper.
- Bill Gates, $96.5bn
A permanent fixture at the top of Forbes’ list for the past 20 years, the Microsoft founder has sold or given away much of his stake in the company – he owns just 1% of Microsoft – and now focuses predominantly on his philanthropic work.
- Warren Buffet, $82.5bn
Now in his ninth decade, the Berkshire Hathaway chief executive, known as the “Oracle of Omagh” is one of the most successful investors of all time. Like Gates he has pledged to give away more than 99% of his fortune to charity.
- Bernard Arnault, $76bn
Arnault is the wealthiest European on the list. The Frenchman oversees an empire of more than 60 brands including Louis Vuitton and Sephora.
- Carlos Slim Helu, $64bn
Mexico’s richest man, Slim Helu, and his family control America Movil, Latin America’s biggest mobile telecommunications firm. He also owns a stake in Mexican construction, consumer goods, mining and real estate, as well as 17% of The New York Times.
- Amancio Ortega, $62.7bn
Ortega stepped down as chairman of Inditex, known for its Zara brand, in 2011 but he still owns nearly 60% of its shares.
- Larry Ellison, $58bn
Cofounder of software firm Oracle, Ellison stepped down as CEO in 2014 but still serves as chairman of the board and chief technology officer.
- Mark Zuckerberg, $62.3bn
The Facebook chief executive and founder’s wealth has shrunk by $8.7bn (£6.6bn) in the past year, as the company battled privacy scandals, the BBC says.
- Michael Bloomberg, $55.5bn
The founder, chief executive and owner of mass media firm Bloomberg LP, Bloomberg took time off from business between 2002 and 2013 in order to serve three consecutive terms as the 108th mayor of New York City.
- Larry Page, $50.8bn
In 1998, Page co-founded Google with business partner Sergey Brin, and still helms Alphabet, Google’s parent company.
What about Britain’s richest man?
There are 52 UK citizens on the list, with the Hinduja brothers, Srichand and Gopichand, who control the Hinduja Group conglomerate, at the top with a net worth of $16.9bn each.
Who is the richest person of all time?
Last year Amazon boss Bezos was declared not only the wealthiest person alive – but of all time.
But while his estimated fortune is technically the largest ever accrued by one individual, this does not take into account inflation or a number of other factors, including how wealth is actually measured.
With a fortune of around $400 billion, Mansu Musa 1 of Mail, the first king of Timbuktu, may not be a household name, but by most estimates is the richest person who ever lived.
Deriving his wealth from his country’s vast salt and gold deposits, which at one time accounted for half the world’s supply, Musa ruled West Africa’s Malian Empire in the early 14th Century, constructing hundreds of mosques across the continent, many of which survive to this day.
With a fortune estimated at between $300-$400 billion in today’s money, Tsar Nikolai Alexandrovich Romanov (Nicolas II) of Russia was deposed and subsequently executed by the Bolsheviks in the aftermath of the Russian Revolution.
The Independent notes that, following his canonisation by the Russian Orthodox Church, he is also the richest saint in history.
Excluding kings, princes and those who inherited their wealth, the list of the world’s richest-ever men – and they are always men – is dominated by the so-called robber barons of 19th and early 20th century America.
Often cited as the richest person who ever lived, oil tycoon John D. Rockefeller was the first person to have a net worth of over $1 billion in the money of the time.
At the time of this death his estate was worth an estimated $340 billion in today’s money, almost 2% of total US economic output.
With an estimated fortune of $310 billion in today’s money, steel magnate and Rockefeller contemporary Andrew Carnegie sold his Carnegie Steel Company to JP Morgan for $480 million in 1901, and later made his name with his philanthropic donations.
Automobile pioneer Henry Ford, who perfected the production line and has become a by-word for American entrepreneurship, had a fortune of around $199 billion at the time of his death in 1947.
This article was first published on theweek.co.uk
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