Latest Forbes rich list confirms there’s plenty of money in tech

Forbes published its latest rich list on Wednesday. The annual list is made up of all the world’s billionaires and this year comprises 1,226 people worth a record $4.6 trillion.

Among the select group are 90 people who’ve made (and are continuing to make) their fortune in the tech industry, 51 of them from the US.

At the top of the list for the third year in a row is Mexican Carlos Slim Helu, who made his money through investments in the telecoms industry. The 72-year-old is said to be worth $69 billion. To confirm that it’s not a typo, let’s just say that one more time: $69 billion.

bill gatesRanked second is someone who Forbes calls “the most generous man on the planet.” That’s right, it’s Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates who, despite having already given away $28 billion, is still worth a colossal $61 billion.

Looking down the list, there are plenty of names from the tech world that you’ll have little trouble recognizing. Listed sixth is Larry Ellison, co-founder and chief executive officer of Oracle, the business hardware and software system provider. According to Forbes, he’s worth $36 billion, down $3.5 billion from this time last year though the chances are he won’t be too concerned about that.

Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page are listed 24th, each with fortunes worth $18.7 billion. Two spots behind them is Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, worth $18.4 billion. Bezos’s wealth has increased by $300 million in the last year, mainly thanks to the strong performance of the online retail giant’s stock, Forbes says.

Mark ZuckerbergBut wait, we’re moving down the list at quite a pace now and still no mention of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. What’s going on? Of course he’s there, a little further down than you might expect, though that could well change once the social networking company goes public later this year. Zuckerberg is said to be worth $17.5 billion and is listed as the 35th richest person in the world.

Also in the top 100 is computer maker Michael Dell, ranked 41st with a value of $15.9 billion. Dell shares the position with Azim Premji, chairman of computer hardware and software manufacturer Wipro, based in India.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is 44th in the list, worth an estimated $15.7 billion. Another Microsoft man, Paul Allen, is said to be worth $14.2 billion, placing the co-founder of the company 48th in the list. Though Allen left the Seattle-based computer giant some years ago, he reportedly still has millions of shares in the company.

With China on the up and up, we can expect to see more of its citizens populating the Forbes list in the coming years. For now, from the tech industry, there’s only one in the top 100 — Robin Li, the man behind Baidu (think of it as China’s answer to Google). Li is ranked 86th and said to be worth $10.2 billion.

Twelve billionaires have died in the past year and so have been replaced in the list by family members, including at number 100 Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Steve Jobs, who passed away in October last year.

Forbes has been compiling a list of the world’s billionaires since 1987, when it contained just 140 names. Information on how the magazine comes up with its valuations can be found here.

[Image: Suravid / Shutterstock]

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