It may come as no surprise, but in 2014, the world’s richest people only got richer. In face, the top 66 richest people in the world now have more wealth than the poorest 3.5 billion people combined. Talk about income inequality. The following is the definitive list of the top 10 richest people in the world in the year 2014.
Bill Gates – $77.1 Billion
Perhaps the most famous icon for wealth and philanthropy in the world, after holding down the second place spot for three years. Bill Gates reclaimed his position in 2014 as the world’s richest person. Gates is known as a prominent American investor, philanthropist, inventor and programmer. He co-founded Microsoft, and also held positions of CEO, chairman and chief software architect at the company before retiring. Through his charitable organization, the Bill & melinda Gates Foundation, Gates has donated more than $26 billion dollars to philanthropic causes such as enhancing healthcare and reducing extreme poverty worldwide.
Carlos Slim Helu – $68.8 Billion
Holding the title of the world’s richest person from 2010 to 2013, this Mexican businessman dropped in rank this year. Via his conglomerate, Grupo Carso, Helu is involved in many Mexican companies in the fields of communication, retailing, technology, and finance. He is also the chairman and chief executive of popular telecommunication companies Telmex and America Movil. Helu has also been named as one of the world’s biggest charitable givers, donating a total of $4 billion to his foundation.
Amancio Ortega – $63.8 Billion
Thanks to his success in the retail industry, this Spanish businessman is worth $64 billion. Ortega is the founder of the famous Spanish clothing company, the Inditex fashion group, which is headquartered in Arteixo, Spain. Perhaps his best known chain is the Zara clothing and accessories shops. Since 2013, Ortega’s wealth has increased by $7 billion.
Warren Buffett – $63.3 Billion
The fourth richest man in the world has amassed a total net worth of $58.2 billion, over $10 billion more than Ellison. Buffett has long been known as one of the world’s wealthiest individuals and has been praised for his dound financial investing and advice. Buffett is the CEO, chairman and largest shareholder of Berkshire Hathaway, an American multinational conglomerate holding company based out of Omaha, Nebraska, and has famously pledged to give away 99 percent of his fortune.
Larry Ellison – 49.3 Billion
Heavily involved in the tech industry, Larry Ellison is the chief executive officer of Oracle, an American multinational computer technology corporation based out of California that specializes in computer hardware systems. Ellison is worth $48 billion, a whopping $8 billion more than the two Koch brothers. Named the third wealthiest man in America last year, Ellison also has large stakes in companies such as Salesforce, NetSuite, Astex Pharmaceuticals and Quark Biotechnology. Ellison was, alsong with Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, one of the billionaires to sign the “The Giving Pledge,” where most of his wealth will be given to philanthropic causes.
Charles Koch – $40.1 Billion
The other man at the head of Koch Industries, Charles Koch ties with his brother for the sixth richest person in the world, worth a total of $40 billion. Charles is the official chief executive officer of Koch Industries and is also fond of charitable organizations such as the Institute for Humane Studies, the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, and the Cato Institute.
David Koch – $40.1 Billion
Worth $40 billion, David Koch is one of the two American businessmen who owns Koch Industries, the second largest private company in the United States. David ties for sixth place with his older brother, Charles Koch, and is considered the wealthiest person in New York. Divid Koch is an active man who along with being the executive vice president of Koch Industries, is involved in various bussinesses, philanthropic pursuits and political events, along with also being a chemical engineer. He is known for is love or arts and often contributes to the Lincoln Center and the American Museum of Natural History, David Koch is also heavily involved in the political sphere, where he donates to various political compaigns and advocacy groups.
Sheldon Adelson – $37.9 Billion
With a net worth of $38 billion, the chairman and chief executive officer of Las Vegas Sands Corporation has made most of his money from the casino business, but also owns the Israeli newspaper, Israel HaYom. Las Vegas Sands Corporation is the parent company of Venetian Macao Limited, which operates both the The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino and the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Adelson has a strong commitment to charity including his own organization, the Adelson Foundation, which has made over $140 million in contributions to Birthright Israel.
Christy Walton – $37.6 Billion
Christy Walton is the only woman to routinely be included in top 10 lists of the world’s richest people. She has a net worth valued at $36.7 billion – $2 billion more than her brother-in-law Jim Christy is the widow of John Walton, one of the sons of Sam Walton, and inherited his fortune after his death in 2005.
Jim Walton – $35.2 Billion
He is the youngest son of Sam Walton, the founder of the world’s largest retailer, Wal-Mart. Walton’s net worth increased to $34.7 billion in 2014, which is $3 billion more than his ranking was in 2013. He replaced his brother, John, on the Wal-Mart Board of Directors in 2005 and is currently on the Strategic Planning and Finance committees as well. Walton is also the CEO of Arvest Bank, another Walton family owned business.
So there you have it, the ten richest people in the world for 2014. Luckily for the world, the richest people in the world, by and large, are heavily involved in philanthropic pursuits that helps those who are less fortunate. Many in the above list have signed a pledge to actually donate the majority of their wealth to philanthropy, which will drastically change and improve many lives in the years and decades to come.