According to the newest Bloomberg Billionaires Index, the world's top ten wealthiest people are all worth more than $100 billion by the end of 2021.
The 10 wealthiest billionaires increased their net worth by $402.17 billion in 2021. They were led by Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who became the world's richest man this year, seemingly beating his toe-to-toe rival Bezos for a long time, and also temporarily exceeding $300 billion in his net worth.
The data shown in the shortlist below are valid as of Thursday, December 30.
All in all, number one this year is certainly the "Technoking of Tesla," as he proclaimed himself earlier in 2021, because he sees no point in the generally accepted regalia of the corporate world. Musk closes this year with an astonishing $277 billion total net worth.
In 2021, he increased his net worth by $121 billion, a little less of the $140 billion he added in 2020, according to the Bloomberg data. Musk's fortune has risen dramatically as a result of his electric carmaker's quick expansion. Tesla's stock has risen by approximately 60% this year, and the company's market capitalization surpassed $1 trillion for the first time in October.
Musk has been selling millions of Tesla shares recently in order to pay an alleged $12 billion tax obligation related to a stock option package he received in 2012.
Number two this year is Jeff Bezos with $195 billion, the former world's richest man, who did not add nearly as much to his net worth as Musk, but is still almost $5 billion more than he was when the year began.
In July, the 57-year-old stepped down as CEO of Amazon, stating that he will devote more time to the Bezos Earth Fund, his Blue Origin spaceship company, and the Bezos Day 1 Fund.
Number three on the list, and the only non-American in the top ten, is French national Bernard Arnault, the CEO of luxury goods conglomerate LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, which includes brands like Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, and Givenchy, increased his net fortune by $61 billion, up to $176 billion in total. The 72-year-old Arnault is the wealthiest man in Europe.
Fourth on the list is Microsoft founder and computer pioneer Bill Gates with $139 billion net worth. Despite giving away tens of billions of dollars to charity over the years, Gates' fortune has grown, thanks in part to the great performance of Microsoft shares, which he still owns roughly 1% of.
Gates has long since relinquished control of Microsoft and now devotes the majority of his time to his philanthropic organization. This year, after 25 years of marriage, Gates divorced his wife Melinda French Gates.
Google co-founder Larry Page closes out the top five in the list of the richest people in the world with a fortune of $130 billion. The remarkable success of Alphabet in 2021, which topped the $2 trillion market cap in November and was just named Big Tech stock of the year by CNBC, added $47 billion to the fortune. Page is no longer the CEO of Alphabet, but he is still on the board of directors.
The youngest of them all, Meta (ex-Facebook) CEO Mark Zuckerberg is number six on the list with a total net worth of $128 billion. The 37-year-old's wealth climbed by $24 billion this year. Zuckerberg holds a 13% share in Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, and is the CEO of the firm, which has seen its stock rise by more than 20% this year, although it plummeted by almost 10% in the fall due to the release of the so-called "Facebook Papers."
The net worth of Google's other co-founder, Russian-born Sergey Brin, increased by $45 billion, putting it to $120 billion for the first time, securing him the seventh place on the list of the richest. The 48-year-old is a board member of Alphabet and owns around 38 million shares of the firm, according to reports.
At the end of the year, the former Microsoft CEO and owner of the NBA's Los Angeles Clippers, the eccentric Steve Balmer, will be $41 billion richer than he was at the beginning of the year, accumulating a total of $122 billion, successfully standing at the number eight position on the list. Ballmer's fortune has grown reportedly because of the appeal of tech equities such as Microsoft, which has increased in value by more than 50% this year.
According to the Thursday data, the ninth richest person is the 91-year-old famous investor Warren Buffett. Berkshire Hathaway's CEO indicated earlier this year that he is "halfway" to his declared aim of giving away the great bulk of his riches, which is currently estimated to be worth $109 billion, but the stock's performance is reportedly not helping.
This year, the Oracle of Omaha, as some call him, added $21 billion to his "almost incomprehensible sum" of wealth.
And the last, but not least of the top 10 richest people on the planet is Larry Ellison, founder of the Oracle Corporation. According to CNBC, this month, Oracle recorded its second-largest gain in 20 years, and Ellison reaped the benefits. The 77-year-old joined the $100 billion club this year, thanks to his company's revenues, which increased his net worth by $29 billion.
Interestingly, Telegram founder Pavel Durov topped the Forbes ranking of the most successful Russian billionaires in 2021. According to the outlet's estimates, over the year his fortune increased by $13.8 billion. It is now more than $17 billion.
In turn, Russian entrepreneurs who were included in Bloomberg's top 50 also increased their income. The 43rd place is held by the natural gas tycoon and founder of Novatek, Leonid Mikhelson, who earned almost $8 billion this year, with a total net fortune estimated at $32 billion. He is followed in the top 50 by businessman and manager Vladimir Potanin, with a fortune of $30 billion, who earned about $817 million in 2021.