You’ll notice a lot of family connections and partnerships within this list. This is because successful people rarely work alone. As the saying goes: Team work makes the dream work. From the US to Germany, Italy, China and India, these men and women are making waves in their industries.

50. Leonardo Del Vecchio

“Work always came before everything. If I’d started selling fruit, I’d be passionate about fruit.”

Luxottica announced plans to merge with French lens manufacturer Essilor in January 2017, making Del Vecchio and his family the world’s largest producer and retailer of sunglasses and prescription glasses. EssilorLuxottica, is set to control 27% of the global eyewear market. 

  • Net worth: USD17.9 billion
  • Age: 82
  • Country: Italy
  • Industry: Eyewear
  • Source of wealth: Luxottica
49. James Simons

“The things we are doing will not go away. We may have bad years, we may have a terrible year sometimes. But the principles we’ve discovered are valid.”

The MIT graduate, who was a codebreaker for the U.S. during the Vietnam War, founded hedge fund firm Renaissance 35 years ago and stepped down from his company seven years ago. He’s still active in the firm’s massive success and excellent performance. 

  • Net worth: USD18 billion
  • Age: 79
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Hedge funds
  • Source of wealth: Renaissance Technologies Corp. 
48. Stefan Quandt

“We have set the course for the future and are very happy about a successful generational change at the top of the company.”

The BMW heir owns over 25% of the automaker and sits on the company’s supervisory board. As deputy chairman, he’s tipped to head the board following his parents’ death. Quandt is also the 94% owner of solar module maker Solarwatt which has partnered with BMW to provide solar power for rooftop systems and carports. 

  • Net worth: USD18.3 billion
  • Age: 51
  • Country: Germany
  • Industry: Automobile
  • Source of wealth: BMW.
47. Charles Ergen

“When you deal with change, you have a couple choices: You can lead it and make the rules, or you can be a fast follower, or you can be a slow follower.”

37 years ago he was selling satellite dishes in rural Denver from the back of a truck. Today he’s the CEO of satellite TV company DISH Network which has more than 14 million subscribers. 

  • Net worth: USD18.3 billion
  • Age: 64
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Satellite TV
  • Source of wealth: DISH Network. 
46. Leonid Mikhelson

“Even by the most pessimistic valuations, the project is feasible.”

Founder and chairman of natural gas producer Novatek, Mikhelson began his career building a gas pipeline in Russia’s Tyumen region as a foreman for a construction company. He is also chairman of gas processing and petrochemical company Sibur. 

  • Net worth: USD18.4 billion
  • Age: 61
  • Country: Russia
  • Industry: Gas, chemicals
  • Source of wealth: Novatek 
45. Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Alsaud

“If I’m going to do something, I do it spectacularly or I don’t do it at all.”

Alsaud’s holdings include stakes in ride-sharing firm Lyft, social media firm Twitter, Citigroup, and hotel management company Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts. In 2016, he joined Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Coalition with the promise of a USD50 million investment. 

  • Net worth: USD18.7 billion
  • Age: 62
  • Country: Saudi Arabia
  • Industry: Investments
  • Source of wealth: Kingdom Holding Co.
44. Theo Albrecht, Jr.

“If the frontline people do count, you couldn’t prove it by examining the reward systems in most organisations.”

The Aldi supermarket chain based on a no-frills, low-price strategy similar to WalMart is the Albrecht’s family’s claim to fame. Theo Albrecht Jr. and the heirs of his brother, Berthold, inherited a corner grocery store which grew into one of the world’s great retail fortunes. 

  • Net worth: USD18.8 billion
  • Age: 66
  • Country: Germany
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: Aldi Nord, Trader Joe’s. 
43. Stefan Persson

“A store is more than a place to buy something. Today’s customers seek inspiration and experiences.”

Hennes & Mauritz, otherwise known as H&M, has made Persson Sweden’s richest person. The global cheap chic fashion retailer has to average one store opening a day to meet its goal of a 10% annual increase in new stores. After retiring as CEO in 1998, his son Karl-Johan took over. 

  • Net worth: USD19.6 billion
  • Age: 69
  • Country: Sweden
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: H&M 
42. Paul Allen

“In my experience, each failure contains the seeds of your next success if you are willing to learn from it.”

Microsoft cofounder Allen plays guitar in a rock band called the Underthinkers, has three professional sports franchises and owns aircraft company Vulcan Aerospace. The two-time cancer survivor has given away more than USD2 billion, including USD500 million to his Allen Institute for Brain Science.

  • Net worth: USD19.9 billion
  • Age: 64
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Technology
  • Source of wealth: Microsoft, investments, self-made.
41. Laurene Powell Jobs

“My relationship with money is that it’s a tool to be self-sufficient, but it’s not something that is a part of who I am.”

Founder and chair of the Emerson Collective, an organisation that uses entrepreneurship to advance social reform and to assist under-resourced students, Powell Jobs isn’t just the widow of tech billionaire Steve Jobs. The Laurene Powell Jobs Trust owns 2.5% of Disney while her Apple share is only 0.7%.

  • Net worth: USD20.2 billion
  • Age: 53
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Technology
  • Source of wealth: Apple, Disney
40. Len Blavatnik

“It’s the thought of what WMG could be in the future that makes me want to stay in the music business for a very long time.”

The owner of Warner Music Group made a fortune selling his stake in Russian oil company TNK-BP for USD7 billion in 2013. His company Access Industries holds stakes in LyondellBasell, Rocket Internet and Tory Burch. 

  • Net worth: USD20 billion
  • Age: 60
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Diversified
  • Source of wealth: Access Industries 
39. Susanne Klatten

“It would be nice if you could solve some problems with money. But the world is not that simple. The money is supposed to be a catalyst.”

Germany’s richest woman and her brother, Stefan Quandt, together own almost 50% of BMW. The economist and MBA-holder helped turn pharmaceutical company Altana AG around after inheriting 50% from her parents. Despite her inherited fortune, Klatten doesn’t just want to be known as an heiress, especially at 55. 

  • Net worth: USD20.4 billion
  • Age: 55
  • Country: Germany
  • Industry: Automobilepharmaceuticals
  • Source of wealth: BMW, Altana AG. 
38. Michael Dell

“I will care about the company after I’m dead.” 

Tech mogul Dell’s fortune mostly lies in his private investment firm MSD Capital. The company’s whose wide range of investments includes the Four Seasons Hualalai in Hawaii and a reported USD63 million stake in Grand Central Terminal in New York City. 

  • Net worth: USD20.4 billion
  • Age: 52
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Technology
  • Source of wealth: Dell computers, self-made. 
37. Joseph Safra

“I had ambition not only to go farther than any man had ever been before, but as far as it was possible for a man to go.”

Owner of Banco Safra, Brazil’s eighth largest bank, Safra was born into a Syrian banking family. Safra also owns Swiss bank J. Safra Sarasin Safra National Bank of New York and 50% of Chiquita Brands International. His real estate portfolio includes a London skyscraper nicknamed the Gherkin.

  • Net worth: USD21.4 billion
  • Age: 78
  • Country: Brazil
  • Industry: Banking
  • Source of wealth: Self-made, diversified investments.
36. Georg Schaeffler

“Today we are where we wanted to go, the fight has paid off; only it took a little longer.” 

Law graduate Georg joined his mother Maria-Elisabeth in running Schaeffler in 2009. Maria-Elisabeth and Georg now own 46% of Continental through Schaeffler Group and holding company, Schaeffler Verwaltungs GmbH. Now a US resident, Georg is the head of the supervisory board of Schaeffler Group and a member of the supervisory board of Continental.

  • Net worth: USD20.7 billion
  • Age: 52
  • Country: Germany
  • Industry: Automotive
  • Source of wealth: Schaeffler Group
35. Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen

“When children play games or build their own creations in the physical world, they actively challenge both the laws of nature and intellectual and physical limits.”

Kristiansen’s grandfather Ole started making wooden toys in his workshop in 1932. Today in addition to his real estate and wine farm investments, he and his three grown children hold a 75% in Lego, where Kristiansen’s son Thomas is vice-chairman. 

  • Net worth: USD21.1 billion
  • Age: 69
  • Country: Denmark
  • Industry: Toy manufacturing
  • Source of wealth: Lego 
34. Masayoshi Son

“A person’s life is over in 50, 100 years. But a company lives on through the people it is composed of, and SoftBank group has to survive even after I’m gone.”

Son’s mobile telecom and investment firm SoftBank acquired struggling U.S. mobile phone carrier Sprint Nextel for USD22 billion in 2013 and promised a USD50 billion investment from the SoftBank Vision Fund in US companies and create 50 000 jobs. 

  • Net worth: USD21.2 billion
  • Age: 59
  • Country: Japan
  • Industry: Internet, telecom
  • Source of wealth: SoftBank 
33. Mukesh Ambani

“I don’t think that ambition should not be in the dictionary of entrepreneurs. But our ambition should be realistic. You have to realise that you can’t do everything.”

100 million subscribers are enjoying the benefits of the launch of 4G phone service Jio in India. Oil and gas tycoon Ambani sparked a price war in the country’s hyper-competitive telecom market with his free broadband and voice services.

  • Net worth: USD23.2 billion
  • Age: 60
  • Country: India
  • Industry: Petrochemicals, oil and gas
  • Source of wealth: Reliance Industries 
32. Lee Shau Kee

“When I was young, business came first, then wealth, then health and finally family. Now it’s health first, then family, then my business and lastly wealth.”

Started in 1976, property giant Henderson Land Development now makes up the bulk of Kee’s wealth. From humble beginnings, joining forces with one of Hong Kong’s most powerful families has enabled Kee to donate over USD400 million toward education over the years.

  • Net worth: USD24.4 billion
  • Age: 89
  • Country: Hong Kong
  • Industry: Real estate
  • Source of wealth: Henderson Land Development
31. Ma Huateng

“Ideas are not important in China – execution is.”

The brainchild of Huateng, popular social network WeChat is a mobile texting app which also works as a mobile wallet. Used by 800 million people, WeChat, and Tencent’s other popular services, have led the social media firm to becoming one of China’s most valuable public companies. 

  • Net worth: USD24.9 billion
  • Age: 45
  • Country: China
  • Industry: Internet media
  • Source of wealth: Tencent Holdings
30. George Soros

“Making an investment decision is like formulating a scientific hypothesis and submitting it to a practical test. The main difference is that the hypothesis that underlies an investment decision is intended to make money and not to establish a universally valid generalisation.”

From railway porter and waiter to Wall Street, Soros established his own hedge fund in 1969 with USD12 million. Almost half a century later, Soros remains a powerhouse through Soros Fund Management, his family office which boasts USD30 billion in assets.

  • Net worth: USD25.2 billion
  • Age: 86
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Hedge funds
  • Source of wealth: Soros Fund Management LLC. 
29. Maria Franca Fissolo

Like her late husband, who avoided interviews and prized secrecy, she avoids being in the limelight.

It all started when Fissolo’s father-in-law Pietro set up a lab to supply his wife’s pastry shop during World War II. The region’s surplus of hazelnuts helped combat the rationed cocoa and the spread that would eventually become Nutella was created.

Fissolo’s husband Michele took after his father’s death, building up Ferrero Group into one of the world’s leading sweets companies, before his death in 2015. Fissolo runs the company alongside her son Giovanni, in their bid to keep the business family-owned. 

  • Net worth: USD25.2 billion
  • Age: 82
  • Country: Italy
  • Industry: Confectionary
  • Source of wealth: Ferrero Group 
28. Phil Knight

“There is an immutable conflict at work in life and in business, a constant battle between peace and chaos. Neither can be mastered, but both can be influenced. How you go about that is the key to success.”

Former track runner Knight retired from the company he started with his coach over 50 years ago in 2016. Blue Ribbon Sports was started with USD1000 capital and today has become a billion dollar brand. 

  • Net worth: USD26.2 billion
  • Age: 79
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: Nike 
27. John Mars

“If you make a really good product that people want and are willing to pay for, money will come.” –  John’s late brother Forrest Mars, Jr.

Established in 1911, Mars Inc. isn’t just a candy factory. John and his sister Jacqueline’s inheritance also makes Uncle Ben’s rice and pet food, including Pedigree and Whiskas. After their brother Forrest Jr died in 2016, his daughter became chairman of the USD35 billion company started by their grandfather Frank. 

  • Net worth: USD27 billion
  • Age: 81
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Confectionary
  • Source of wealth: Mars Inc.
26. Jacqueline Mars

“There’s a real moral imperative in being an organisation that takes the time to sit and listen to the customers and the people they’re serving.”

Serving on the boards of six other organisations, horse lover Jacqueline joined Mars Inc. in 1982, where she oversaw the development and marketing of new food products. In 2016 she retired from the board after leaving the company 15 years prior. She now owns a farm that has trained horses ridden by Olympic medallists. 

  • Net worth: USD27 billion
  • Age: 77
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Confectionary
  • Source of wealth: Mars Inc.
25. David Thomson

“Dynamic duos are the stuff of corporate legend: Sears and Roebuck, Roy and Walt Disney, Hewlett and Packard, and the like.”

Thomson and his family own media and publishing empire Thomson Reuters founded by his grandfather Roy, where Thomson serves as chairman. The Thomsons are also stakeholders in telecom giant Bell Canada and own the Globe and Mail newspaper. 

  • Net worth: USD27.2 billion
  • Age: 59
  • Country: Canada
  • Industry: Media
  • Source of wealth: Thomson Reuters 
24. Beate Heister and Karl Albrecht Jr.

“There are only two ways to establish competitive advantage: do things better than others or do them differently.” – Karl Albrecht Sr.

When the ownership of retail powerhouse Aldi was divided in 1961 Beate and Karl Jr’s father Karl Sr. acquired stores in southern Germany, and the rights to Aldi in the UK, Australia and the US. While Beate has never worked for the family business, she, her husband and their son sit on the advisory board.   

  • Net worth: USD27.2 billion
  • Age: 66 and 69
  • Country: Germany
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: Aldi 
23. Jack Ma

“I want to change history, do something important in my life, and influence individuals like we have with millions of small businesses on Alibaba. Then they love and respect you because you made their life important.” 

In 2014 e-commerce firm Alibaba set a record as the world’s biggest public stock offering. Ma has since forged an alliance with Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Partners in an attempt to boost to a struggling effort so far in the entertainment industry.

  • Net worth: USD28.3 billion
  • Age: 52
  • Country: China
  • Industry: eCommerce
  • Source of wealth: Alibaba.
22. Jorge Lemann

“In day-to-day life, you have stimulus to behave unethically, but in the long term, it always pays off to be ethical.” 

The former journalist and professional tennis player is known for his affinity for mergers and acquisitions since cofounding investment company 3G Capital in 2004. Along with frequent deal partner Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, Lemann facilitated the megamerger of Kraft and Heinz and took over SABMiller and Unilever.

  • Net worth: USD29.2 billion
  • Age: 77
  • Country: Brazil
  • Industry: Diversified
  • Source of wealth: 3G Capital 
21. Steve Ballmer

“Great companies in the way they work, start with great leaders.”

Ballmer dropped out of Stanford University to join friend Bill Gates at Microsoft in 1980 and 20 years later became CEO – a position he held for 14 years. Today he’s the proud owner of NBA franchise he Los Angeles Clippers, now his main venture. 

  • Net worth: USD30 billion
  • Age: 61
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Technology
  • Source of wealth: Microsoft
20. Sheldon Adelson

“The next move can’t be smaller than the last.”

Former reporter and mortgage broker hit the jackpot when he sold his company for USD860 million in 1995 and used the capital to build the Venetian Casino Resort and the Sands Expo Convention Center. The casino magnate has since expanded and taken his gambling conglomerate, Las Vegas Sands, public.

  • Net worth: USD30.4 billion
  • Age: 83
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Real Estate
  • Source of wealth: Las Vegas Sands
19. Li Ka-shing

“You can believe in Fung Shui if you want, but ultimately people control their own fate. The most important thing is to improve yourself and give it your best. Then many things previously thought to be impossible will become possible.”

At 22, Ka-shing opened his own factory after dropping out of school six years prior to support his widowed mother and siblings. Today CK Hutchison Holdings, is a vast business empire with interests in real estate, manufacturing, energy, telecommunications, and technology. His venture-capital fund Horizon Ventures has backed companies like Facebook, Skype and Spotify. 

  • Net worth: USD31.2 billion
  • Age: 88
  • Country: Hong Kong
  • Industry: Diversified
  • Source of wealth: CK Hutchison Holdings
18. Wang Jianlin

“Don’t ally your personal interests with the development of the company.”

Jianlin’s diverse Dalian Wanda Group involves various sectors and includes Wanda Commercial Properties, Wanda Cinema Line, British yacht maker Sunseeker and US-based AMC Entertainment. His latest investment – aside from a stake in various sporting initiatives – is Legendary Entertainment, the producer of blockbusters The Dark Knight and Jurassic World. 

  • Net worth:  USD31.3 billion
  • Age: 62
  • Country: China
  • Industry: Real Estate
  • Source of wealth: Dalian Wanda Group 
17. Alice Walton

“One of the great responsibilities that I have is to manage my assets wisely, so that they create value.” 

WalMart founder Sam Walton’s only daughter has, unlike her brothers, stepped away from involvement the family’s superstore business, still holding a major stake in the company. The art lover is the chairman of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art and boasts an art collection valued at hundreds of millions of dollars.

  • Net worth: USD33.8 million
  • Age: 67
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: WalMart 
16. Jim Walton

“There is critical mass with high-speed Internet connections, so video is a good user experience. And that means there can be critical mass for advertisers.”

Jim runs the family’s Arvest Bank, which boasts assets of over USD16 billion. In 1982, he co-founded the Community Publishers Inc. which today is one of the largest publishing companies in the country. Jim and other heirs of his father Sam – Alice and Rob – collectively own an excess of half of WalMart’s stock. In June 2016 he stepped down from the board and was replaced by his son Steuart. 

  • Net worth: USD34 billion
  • Age: 69
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: WalMart, Arvest Bank. 
15. S. Robson Walton

“I learned from my dad that change and experimentation are constants and important. You have to keep trying new things.”

WalMart heir Rob Walton stepped down as chairman – following his father Sam’s death in 1992 – after 23 years at the helm in 2015. His son-in-law took over, but Walton still sits on WalMart’s board. 

  • Net worth: USD34.1b billion
  • Age: 72
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: WalMart 
14. Liliane Bettencourt

“Man is fond of formulas that Assen its employees as ‘Work is invincible’ or ‘Intelligence is the ability to see the sets and the views of others,’ all it takes not too much.” 

The world’s richest woman, Liliane Bettencourt may not actively run the company she inherited from her father, cosmetics giant L’Oréal but she’s still making a fortune. Her current net worth of almost USD37 billion is a USD3 billion increase from last year. After her dementia diagnosis, her grandson replaced the elderly heiress on L’Oréal’s board in 2012.

  • Net worth: USD39.5 billion
  • Age: 94
  • Country: France
  • Industry: Cosmetics
  • Source of wealth: L’Oréal
13. Sergey Brin

“Obviously everyone wants to be successful, but I want to be looked back on as being very innovative, very trusted and ethical and ultimately making a big difference in the world.”

The president of Alphabet, holding company of Google, Russian native Sergey Brin is America’s richest immigrant. Alphabet was formed following the restructuring of Google in 2015, allowing Brin to focus on exploring inventive new projects and ideas.

  • Net worth: USD39.8 billion
  • Age: 43
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Technology
  • Source of wealth: Google 
12. Larry Page

“You never lose a dream; it just incubates as a hobby.”

Google cofounder Larry Page heads up parent company Alphabet, which is involved in everything from home automation to self-driving cars and prolonging human life. The one thing the alternative-energy advocate has splurged on is his eco-friendly mansion that uses geothermal energy and rainwater capture. 

  • Net worth: USD40.7 billion
  • Age: 44
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Technology
  • Source of wealth: Google
11. Bernard Arnault

“When you are on the management side, you still have to understand the artistic sensibility so that there is a dialogue with the creative side.”

For 28 years he’s been at the helm of an empire of 70 luxury brands and an estimated 3900 retail stores under powerhouse LVMH. In addition to the likes of Tag Heuer, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior, family parent company Groupe Arnault also owns supermarket chain Carrefour.

  • Net worth: USD41.5 billion
  • Age: 68
  • Country: France
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: LVMH 
10. Michael Bloomberg

“Entrepreneurship is having an idea to do something great and not entirely have a plan in how to do it, but the drive and willpower to make it work.”

Wall Street isn’t a bad career start, but being fired from investment bank Salomon Brothers in 1981 spurred former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg to cofound financial information and media company Bloomberg LP. His stake in the company is worth USD45 billion and he’s donated some of that fortune to causes including gun control and climate change. 

  • Net worth: USD47.5 billion
  • Age: 75
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Media
  • Source of wealth: Bloomberg LP
9. David Koch

“I’m basically a libertarian, and I’m a conservative on economic matters, and I’m a social liberal.”

Executive vice president of Koch Industries David, runs his late father Fred’s company with his older brother Charles. Their business manufacturers a variety of items, but David has other interests like his David H. Koch Charitable Foundation to which he donated USD1.2 billion last year following his conquering of prostate cancer.

  • Net worth: USD48.3 billion
  • Age: 77
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Diversified
  • Source of wealth: Koch Industries 
8. Charles Koch

“I’ve always believed in the saying that ‘there is no limit to what you can accomplish if you don’t care who gets the credit.’”

Charles Koch has been at the helm of Koch Industries – the second largest company in the US – for 50 years. He and his brother David are politically influential, often spending hundreds of millions on political campaigns and causes.

  • Net worth: USD48.3 billion
  • Age: 81
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Diversified
  • Source of wealth: Koch Industries.
7. Larry Ellison

“When people start telling you that you’re crazy, you just might be on to the most important innovation in your life.”

Tech tycoon Ellison stepped down as CEO of Oracle Corp. in 2014 after 38 years on the job. Four years prior he’d reduced his annual salary from USD1 million to USD1. Today he’s the company’s chief technology officer and stock awards have ensured he takes home over USD60 million. He is a member of Giving Pledge, an initiative by Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, committing to give away at least half of his fortune.

  • Net worth: USD52.2 billion
  • Age: 72
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Software
  • Source of wealth: Oracle Corporation
6. Carlos Slim Helu

“I don’t believe too much in luck. I believe in circumstances. I believe in work.”

Born into an entrepreneurial family, Helu became the richest man in Mexico after inheriting his father’s retail and real-estate businesses and building a diversified portfolio of investments in the financial, industrial, telecommunications, and media sectors. His company, Grupo Carso, acquired state phone company Telmex, which now owns 80% of the telephone lines in Mexico, making him the richest man in his country. 

  • Net worth: USD54.5 billion
  • Age: 77
  • Country: Mexico
  • Industry: Telecom
  • Source of wealth: Grupo Carso 
5. Mark Zuckerberg

“The biggest risk is not taking any risk… In a world that is changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”

Already a millionaire by 23, the last 10 years have seen Mark Zuckerberg skyrocket in wealth and success. All because he wanted to “improve people’s lives, especially socially”. Yes, even he says it sounds corny, but the Facebook mogul has managed to do just with his USD400 billion social network. Connecting billions of people is his proudest achievement, but he couldn’t have done it without risks long the way.

  • Net worth: USD56 billion
  • Age: 33
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Technology
  • Source of wealth: Facebook
4. Amancio Ortega

“I am the property of my business, not the reverse.”

The richest man in Europe’s love affair with fashion began in a small family company manufacturing textiles. From delivery boy to owner of fashion titan Inditex, since co-founding retail giant fashion giant – and the company’s biggest success – Zara in 1975 with his then wife Rosalia Mera, Ortega has spent his more than USD400 million in dividends on multiple properties across Europe and the US. 

  • Net worth: USD71.3 billion
  • Age: 81
  • Country: Spain
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: Zara 
3. Jeff Bezos

“If you decide that you’re going to do only the things you know are going to work, you’re going to leave a lot of opportunity on the table.”

The CEO and founder of Amazon went from selling books online to creating an online platform consumers’ dreams are made of. In addition to founding the fastest company ever to reach USD100 billion in annual sales, Bezos owns an aerospace company, Blue Origin and US publication, The Washington Post.

  • Net worth: USD72.8 billion
  • Age: 53
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Retail
  • Source of wealth: Amazon.com
2. Warren Buffett

“It’s better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behaviour is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction.”

When Warren Buffett bought textile company Berkshire Hathaway in 1969 he began the building of his massive fortune. Today it serves as a holding company for many lucrative investments including Apple, Coca-Cola and American Express. True to the frugal nature of those in his class, Buffett still stays in the first home he purchased in the 50s and has donated in excess of USD25 billion to charity.

  • Net worth: USD75.6 billion
  • Age: 86
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Investment
  • Source of wealth: Berkshire Hathaway
1. Bill Gates

“A bad strategy will fail no matter how good your information is, and lame execution will stymie a good strategy. If you do enough things poorly, you will go out of business.”

Currently the richest person in the world for 18 out of the past 23 years, in 2014 Bill Gates stepped down as chairman of Microsoft, the company that he cofounded in 1975. Gates regularly sells his Microsoft shares and now owns 2.3% of the company where he’s a technology advisor and board member.

  • Net worth: USD86 billion
  • Age: 61
  • Country: USA
  • Industry: Technology
  • Source of wealth: Microsoft

 

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