In last year’s Forbes list, there were only six tycoons who had broken the record of having a fortune of more than 100 billion US dollars. What is new is that in this year’s list, published this Tuesday, there are 14 members of an exclusive club that only those with a net worth of about 12 figures enter. The Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, the richest person in Latin America, could not enter the exclusive group of those called “the group of the rich of 100 billion dollars, because his wealth was 93,000 million US dollars.

To get an idea of the size of the wealth of 100 billion US Dollars, just look at the size of a country’s GDP, that is, the sum of all goods and services that a nation produces in a certain country. Therefore, the wealth of each of these 14 people is greater than the GDP of countries such as Panama, Uruguay, Costa Rica or Bolivia.

Chase Peterson-Withorn, senior wealth editor at Forbes, said it had been an “amazing” year for the world’s richest people. “Even in times of financial uncertainty for many, the super rich continue to prosper,” he noted. Forbes said there will be a record 2,781 billionaires in 2024, 141 more than the previous year and 26 more than the previous record in 2021. The elites are richer than before and they accumulate wealth of 14.2 trillion US Dollars.

This is the list of “Club 14”, the most exclusive group of the richest people on the planet, according to Forbes.

1. Bernard Arnault (France)

Bernard Arnault

Bernard Arnault

  • Net worth: US$233 billion

For the second year in a row Arnault is the richest man in the world. Arnault’s wealth grew 10% in 2023, it has been another record year for his luxury company, LVMH, owner of Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior and Sephora.

2. Elon Musk (USA)

Elon Musk

Elon Musk

Net worth: US$195 billion

As the position is constantly changing, Musk has won and lost the title of “richest in the world” several times, as the valuation of SpaceX, Tesla and the social network X (formerly Twitter) has changed.

3. Jeff Bezos (USA)

Jeff Bezos

Jeff Bezos

Net worth: US$194 billion

Bezos is richer this year thanks to the strong performance of Amazon’s stock market. Jeff Bezos founded e-commerce giant Amazon in 1994 out of his Seattle garage. Bezos stepped down as CEO to become executive chairman in 2021. He owns a bit less than 10% of the company. He and his wife MacKenzie divorced in 2019 after 25 years of marriage and he transferred a quarter of his then-16% Amazon stake to her.

Bezos donated more than $1.1 million worth of stock to nonprofits in 2023, though it’s unclear which organizations received those shares. He owns The Washington Post and Blue Origin, an aerospace company developing rockets; he briefly flew to space in one in July 2021. Bezos said in a November 2022 interview with CNN that he plans to give away the majority of his wealth in his lifetime, without disclosing specific details.

4. Mark Zuckerberg (USA)

Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg

Net worth: US$177 billion

For Meta’s executive director, the situation was dire. After the social media giant’s stock fell 75% from its 2021 high, it has nearly tripled in the past year. A 19-year-old Mark Zuckerberg started Facebook in 2004 for students to match names with photos of classmates. Zuckerberg took Facebook public in 2012; he now owns about 13% of the company’s stock. Facebook changed its name to Meta in 2021 to shift the company’s focus to the metaverse. In 2015, Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, pledged to give away 99% of their Meta stake over their lifetimes.

5. Larry Ellison (USA)

Larry Ellison

Larry Ellison

Net worth: US$141,000 billion

Over the past year, shares of the technology company Oracle have risen more than 30%, boosting its fortunes. Although he stepped down as the company’s CEO, Ellison remains president, chief technology officer and its largest shareholder.

Larry Ellison is chairman, chief technology officer and cofounder of software giant Oracle, of which he owns just under 40%. He gave up the Oracle CEO role in 2014 after 37 years at the helm. Oracle has grown in part through steady acquisitions of software companies: the biggest was $28.3 billion for electronic health records company Cerner in 2021. In 2020, Ellison moved permanently to the Hawaiian island Lanai, which he bought nearly all of in 2012 for $300 million. Ellison sat on Tesla’s board from December 2018 to August 2022. He still owns about 15 million shares in the electric carmaker.

6. Warren Buffett (USA)

Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett

Net worth: US$133 billion.

Considered one of the most successful investors of all time, Buffett runs Berkshire Hathaway, a conglomerate that owns several companies, including insurance company Geico, battery maker Duracell and restaurant chain Dairy Queen. Berkshire shares are at record levels up 30% from last year.

7. Bill Gates (USA)

Bill Gates

Bill Gates

Net worth: US$128 billion.

The Microsoft co-founder was the richest person in the world for 18 of the 23 years between 1995 and 2017. Despite his enormous wealth, Gates has fallen on the list due to fierce competition in the technology sector, a costly divorce in 2021, and his donations to charities, according to Forbes.

8. Steve Ballmer (USA)

Steve Ballmer

Steve Ballmer

Net worth: US$121 billion.

The former CEO of Microsoft led the company from 2000 to 2014, after the dot-com. After retiring from Microsoft, Ballmer bought the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team of the NBA (National Basketball Association), whose value has increased in recent years. They are currently the fifth most valuable team in the NBA.

9. Mukesh Ambani (India)

Mukesh Ambani

Mukesh Ambani

Net worth: US$116 billion.

Ambani’s wealth has increased significantly due to the increase in the shares of his company Reliance Industries. The company has interests in petrochemicals, oil and gas, telecommunications, retail and financial services. Mukesh Ambani chairs and runs $110 billion (revenue) Reliance Industries, which has interests in petrochemicals, oil and gas, telecom, retail and financial services.

Reliance was founded by his late father Dhirubhai Ambani, a yarn trader, in 1966 as a small textile manufacturer. After his father’s death in 2002, Ambani and his younger sibling Anil divvied up the family empire. Reliance’s telecom and broadband service Jio has more than 470 million subscribers. In August 2023, Reliance listed its finance arm, Jio Financial Services.

10. Larry Page (USA)

 Larry Page

Larry Page

Net Worth: US$114,000 million.

Co-founder and board member of Alphabet, parent company of Google. Together with Sergey Brin, they remain the biggest shareholders of the big technology company. Larry Page stepped down as CEO of Alphabet, the parent company of Google, in 2019 but remains a board member and a controlling shareholder. He cofounded Google in 1998 with fellow Stanford Ph.D. student Sergey Brin.

With Brin, Page invented Google’s PageRank algorithm, which powers the search engine. Page was CEO until 2001, when Eric Schmidt took over, and then from 2011 until 2015, when he became CEO of Google’s new parent firm Alphabet.

11. Sergey Brin (Russia/USA)

Sergey Brin

Sergey Brin

Net worth: US$110 billion.

Co-founder and board member of Alphabet. Brin stepped down as president of the company in December 2019, but still holds a majority stake in the company along with Larry Page.

12. Michael Bloomberg (USA)

Michael Bloomberg

Michael Bloomberg

Net worth: US$106 billion.

Co-founder of financial news and media company Bloomberg LP. He currently owns 88% of the business. He was mayor of New York City for 12 years.

13. Amancio Ortega (SPAIN)

Amancio Ortega

Amancio Ortega

Net worth: US$103 billion.

His success increased last year thanks to a 43% increase in the shares of his clothing company, Inditex, which manages the Zara brand. Real estate also includes equipment, residential and office properties primarily in Europe and the United States.

14. Carlos Slim (Mexico)

Carlos Slim

Carlos Slim

Net worth: US$102 billion.

The businessman was the richest man in the world and still remains the richest man in Latin America. His wealth grew last year thanks to the rise of the Mexican currency and the rise in the price of a 60% stake in his industrial company, Grupo Carso.

Slim and his family own América Móvil, the largest telecommunications company in Latin America.

In the last ten years, the wealth of the club’s members has increased by 255%, a greater increase than that of the average billionaire.

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