Today’s On the Spot Light features the 20 Richest Billionaires in Finance Industry as featured in Financial News by Matt Turner.
Everyone is affected by the global financial crisis. Even the world’s richest billionaires. According to Forbes, last year, the world had 1,125 dollar billionaires. However, today that number has been decreased dramatically to a meager 793. An astounding $1.4 Trillion were wiped out and vaporized in an instant.
Topping the largest losers was Anil Ambani losing $31.9 Billion. Second was Lakshmi Mittal losing $25.7 Billion and third was the World’s Greatest Investor Warren Buffett losing $25 billion. Because of these losses, the long time reigning Microsoft Owner Bill Gates reclaimed his title as the world’s richest man, surpassing the former throne of Buffett.
Even though the finance industry was the most affected industry in the global financial crisis, still some managed to be on list of the Top 20 richest billionaires in the world connected to the financial services sector.
Listed below are their names:
1. Warren Buffett, 78 years old, $37 billion.
Buffett, chairman and chief executive of financial conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway, with that loss of $25 billion in wealth last year, is now the second richest man in the world behind Gates.
2. Michael Bloomberg, 67, $16 billion.
Bloomberg was the only man in the top 20 whose wealth increased last year, despite his only taking home $1 a year in compensation as mayor of New York City. The former Salomon Brothers trader is now the 17th richest man in the world.
3. Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Alsaul, 54, $13.3 billion.
The “Buffett of Arabia” saw shares in his Saudi-listed investment vehicle Kingdom Holding fall 60% last year, as his ill-timed bet on Citigroup backfired, with shares in the U.S. financial conglomerate falling in 86% in a year. Ranked No. 22 in the rich list.
4. David Thomson, 51, $13 billion.
Chairman of Thomson Corp, now Thomson Reuters, the media conglomerate in which has family own a 70% stake. Also co-chair of his family investment vehicle, Woodbridge. Ranked 24th in the rich list.
5. George Soros, 78, $11 billion.
Soros founded the Quantum Find in 1969, and is said to have made $1 billion in a day in his fight with the Bank of England over Sterling. Speaking in Davos earlier this year, he told an audience his fund’s returns were in “positive territory” in 2008. Tied for 29th in the rich list.
6. Ronald Perelman, 66, $10 billion.
Renowned corporate raider Perelman famously bid for Salomon Brothers in the late 1980s, and sold Golden State Bancorp to Citigroup in 2002 for $6 billion. Ranked 35th in the rich list.
7. Mikhail Prokhorov, 43, $9.5 billion.
Despite losing more than half of his wealth last year, Prokhorov is now the richest man in Russia, and owner of a 50% stake in Renaissance Capital, through his investment vehicle Onexim Group. Ranked 40th in the rich list.
8. Carl Icahn, 73, $9 billion.
Activist investor Icahn, a former Wall Street trader at Dreyfus & Co, was hit by a 71% fall in the value of shares in his holding company Icahn Enterprises last year. He has recently switched his focus from forcing a takeover at Yahoo to Hollywood movie studio Lions Gate Entertainment. Tied for 43rd in the rich list.
9. George Kaiser, 66, $9 Billion.
Owner of a $1.5 Billion stake in Bank of Oklahoma, according to Forbes, has a portfolio of private equity holdings. The majority of Kaiser’s wealth derives from Kaiser-Francis Oil, which is one of the biggest privately owned energy producers in the US. Ranked joint 43rd in the rich list.
10. Lee Shau Kee, 81, $9 Billion.
Hong Kong real estate investor Kee has seen his biggest holding, Henderson Land Development, halve in value in the past year. Kee is a director at the Bank of East Asia and has been chairman at Henderson since 1976. Ranked joint 43rd in the rich list.
11. James Simons, 71, $8 billion.
Founder of hedge fund Renaissance Technologies, Simons’ wealth actually increased last year. According to Forbes, his quant hedge fund has returned 80% net of fees last year. Ranked 55th in the rich list.
12. Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair, 55, $7.8 Billion.
Ghurair is the president of Mashreq, the largest independent bank in the United Arab Emirates with $23.8 Billion in assets. Ranked 57th in the rich list.
13. Maan Al-Sanea, 54, $7 Billion.
Saudi investor who formerly owned a large stake in HSBC, Al-Sanea also owns stakes in mining, technology, and real estate firms. Ranked joint 62nd in the rich list.
14. Edward Johnson, 78, $7 Billion.
Johnson owns a 49% stake in Fidelity Investments, America’s largest mutual fund company, while his daughter Abigail owns a 24% stake, fueling speculation she could take over at Fidelity if Johnson steps down. Ranked joint 62nd in the rich list.
15. August von Finck, 79, $6.7 Billion
Son of Wilhelm von Finck, who founded insurance giant Allianz and private bank Merck, Finck & Co. His investment portfolio includes real estate, restaurants, an insurance group and a champagne maker. Ranked 69th on the list.
16. Mikhail Fridman, 44, $6.3 Billion.
Co-owner of Alfa Group, which has shares in Vimpelcon and TNK-BP. Started out as a commodities trader after setting up Alfa-Eco with two college friedns. Ranked 71st in the rich list.
17. Sulaiman Al Rahji, 89, $6.2 Billion.
One of four brothers who turned Al Rahji Bank from a small business into the world’s largest Islamic Bank. He now chairs the bank, and has a 25% stake. According to Forbes, he has 23 children. Ranked 74th in the rich list.
18. Petr Kellner, 44, $6 BIllion.
Kellner sold a 51% stake in his CZIH insurance company last year for around $3.4 Billion, and has now set his sights on consumer finance in Russia with his banking firm PPF Group. Started out selling office supplies, before borrowing $1 Billion to set up an investment fund. Ranked 76th on the rich list.
19. John Paulson, 53, $6 Billion.
Hedge fund manager Paulson reaped handsome profits by shorting sub-prime in 2008, personally reaping $3.5 Billion. Paulson, who previously worked for Bear Stearns, has continued to benefit from the credit crunch by short selling UK bank shares. Ranked joint 76th in the rich list.
20. Kirk Kerkorian, 91, $5 Billion.
Investor Kerkorian has lost $9 Billion in the past year as stakes in MGM Mirage and Ford backfired. He is the owner of Mirage Resorts and Mandalay Bay Resorts. Ranked 98th on the rich list.
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