Modern society has been dominated by the idea that accumulating wealth is what you should do in life. Money equals success, power and influence. It is a powerful drive and the people who are best at it are looked up at and wield an enormous amount of power. All of the billionaires on this list are men (Liliane Bettencourt would actually be the first woman to appear on the list and would be number 11, with a cool $41.2 billion). You will also see that all of the richest men on this list are white and many of them are American. They comes from a range of backgrounds and have accumulated their wealth in very different ways. Technology features strongly though.
List of Top 10 Richest People in The World in 2017
10. Charles Koch
Charles Koch is Chairman, co-owner and CEO of Koch Industries. He and his brother David each own 42% of the business which they inherited from their father before expanding it. It shifted from being an exclusively oil refining and chemical refining business to focusing on a range of others areas, from pollution control to minerals, forest products, fertilizer manufacture and ranching.
9. David Koch
Along with his brother Charles, he owns 42% of Koch Industries, serving as Executive Vice President. He is also the President of the subsidiary organisation Koch Engineering. Koch, like his brother, is a keen libertarian and in 1980 he stood for Vice President of the United States on behalf of the United States Libertarian Party. He is a keen philanthropist and is the richest resident of New York City.
8. Michael Bloomberg
Bloomberg is the founder, CEO and the owner of Bloomberg LP, a financial and media company which reaches across the world. He is also well known for having served as the mayor of New York for three terms, beginning in 2001. He began his career at Salamon Brothers, an investment bank in Wall Street and he led the trading teams there until he became a systems development leader. He was laid off in 1981, when Salamon was bought out, but he was also given a $10 million remuneration package. He used this to start his own company, providing high quality information to Wall Street traders, that was easily accessible and fast. By March 2009 Bloomberg had amassed $16 billion, more than $4.5 billion on the year before.
7. Larry Ellison
Ellison is the co-founder of Oracle Corporation and is currently the Executive Chairman, having stood down as CEO in 2014. Oracle sells database systems to vendors across the world, focusing on mid and low range systems. His key influence was Edgar Codd’s designs of database sets which led him to form Oracle in 1977. Away from business, Ellison enjoys yachting and flying. He owns two military jets.
6. Carlos Slim
Slim is the first non American on the list, although he is still from North America, being Mexican. He owns a conglomerate called Grupo Carso which has acquired many companies across Mexico. For a time he was the richest man in the world. His businesses range from healthcare to education, manufacturing, retail, sport and finance. In terms of GDP, he alone is 6% of the entirety of Mexico’s output. It was his father who inspired him in business ad he learned from a young age that it was always better to save and invest than spend. He began his career as a stock trader in Mexico in the 1960s and from an early stage, gradually began to acquire companies. He is always on the look out for new investments.
5. Mark Zuckerberg
One of the most famous billionaires of our age, Zuckerberg is one of the founders of the social media company Facebook. Facebook was launched by Zuckerberg with his college room-mates at Harvard in 2004 and slowly spread around college campuses. By 2012 it had 1 billion users. A successful movie was made about Zuckerberg and the making of Facebook – The Social Network, released in October 2010. Zuckerberg is by far the youngest of the billionaires and is likely to overtake the others at some point in the near future.
4. Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett is considered to perhaps be the most successful investor of all time. He is an American business magnate and CEO, Chair and largest shareholder in Berkshire Hathaway, a multinational conglomerate holding company. He had pledged to give away 99% of his wealth and is a generous philanthropist already. Despite his wealth he lives rather frugally. He has given lots of his money away via the Gates foundation.
3. Jeff Bozos
Bezos is an American and a technology entrepreneur, best known as the founder, chair and CEO of amazon.com, the world’s largest online shopping retailer. However he has lots of other interests, including in aerospace and the media. He founded amazon in 1994, working from his garage. He had left a well paying hedge fund job on a whim after finding out that the internet was growing and that there were tax breaks in certain states for mail order retail. In 2013 he purchased the Washington Post for $250 million. He was also one of the first investors in Google in 1998.
2. Amancio Ortega
The only European in the list, Ortega is a Spanish businessman, who founded Inditex fashion, best known for its Zara brand. He opened his first Zara store in 1975. Today, he has over 6000 stores. He is the richest man in Europe although he is reported to have lost billions as a result of Britain’s decision to leave the European Union in 2016.
1. Bill Gates
Bill Gates is probably the best known entrepreneur in the world and is co-founder of Microsoft, the world’s largest PC software company. He has been the wealthiest man in the world since 2014, although has held the title before in the past. He is a significant philanthropist, giving away a lot of his wealth through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
These above are the Top 10 Richest People in The World 2017. It is clear that technology dominates the list and this is where the trend seems to be going in terms of accumulating wealth. Many of these people however are significant philanthropists and either give large amounts of money away currently or have suggested that they will give away significant amounts in the future. They are inspirational figures for many people and inspire people around the world to get up and get stuff done.