Technology is once again proving itself to be as good as gold. In the just-published Forbes magazine annual list of The World’s Billionaires, a number of list members owe their fortune to tech.
Mexico-based mobile carrier investor Carlos Slim Helu “and family” top the list again for the fourth time with a eye-popping US$ 73 billion net worth. 2012 was a good year for this number one titan of riches, since he’s now US$ 4 billion richer than a year ago. Bill Gates, who apparently has some connection to some kind of technology, is second with US$ 67 billion.
Ellison, Bezos, Dell
Fifth place is occupied by Oracle founder and CEO Larry Ellison, obtained for a mere US$ 43 billion. Amazon.com’s Jeff Bezos is 19th with US$ 25.2 billion, and Dell’s Michael Dell wins 49th at US$ 15.3 billion.
The youngest (age 28) member of this exclusive club is Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg, 66th on the list with US$ 13.3 billion. Dustin Moskovitz, Zuckerberg’s former roommate at Harvard and a Facebook co-founder, is 353rd with only US$ 3.3 billion, and Eduardo Saverin, also a member of Facebook’s founding team, is 670th at US$ 2.2 billion.
Google, Microsoft and Apple are heavily represented among the other tech-derived billionaires on the list. They include Google co-founder and CEO Larry Page at position #20 with US$ 23 billion, his cohort Sergey Brin taking 21st with US$ 22.8 billion, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer at number 51 with US$ 15.2 billion, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen at 53 with $15 billion, and Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt’s US$ 8.2 billion net worth earning him position 138. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs’ widow, Laurene Powell Jobs, is 98th at US$ 8.2 billion.
Bottom: $1 Billion
Of course, technology plays a key part of a number of other billionaires' fortunes, even if they are not most associated with some hugely successful startup. Rupert Murdoch (#91, $11.2 billion), for instance, has holdings in satellite-delivered TV, cable networks, and other technology-driven industries. Pierre Omidyar (#123, $8.7 billion) is founder and chairman of eBay.
By the way, at the bottom of the list there are several dozen paupers, relatively speaking, with only US$ 1 billion to their name. Last on the list, at #1342, is real estate mogul Zhang Keqiang.