Yahoo! Maktoob – Carlos Slim,
the telecommunications tycoon who controls Mexico's
America Movil SAB (AMXL), is the richest person on Earth, according
to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, a daily ranking of the world's 20
The 72-year-old's net worth fell $478.4 million in a day to $68.5
billion as of the close of markets on March 2, as U.S. moguls Bill Gates
and Warren Buffett placed second and third on the list compiled by
"I'm competitive," Batista, who trails Slim by almost $39 billion, said
in a March 2 telephone interview from Rio de Janeiro. "It's Brazil's
time to be No. 1. Brazilians have always admired the American dream.
What's happening in Brazil is the Brazilian dream and I happen to be the
The Bloomberg Billionaires Index takes measure of the world's wealthiest
people based on market and economic changes and Bloomberg News
reporting. Each net worth figure is updated every business day at 5:30
p.m. in New York. The valuations are listed in U.S. dollars.
Today's ranking was published with the release of new billionaires
profile pages in the Bloomberg Professional service. The profiles
feature a transparent analysis of how each billionaire's fortune was
Slim's fortune has increased 11 percent this year, according to the
index. A spokesman for Slim didn't immediately return a telephone
request for comment.
Gates, 56, co-founder of
Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) in Redmond, Washington, is worth $62.4
billion, down $102.1 million on March 2 and up 11 percent year to date.
The fortune of Buffett, 81, chairman of Omaha, Nebraska- based Berkshire
Hathaway Inc. (BRK/B), declined $336.9 million to $43.8 billion on March
2 and is up 2.4 percent in 2012. Almost all of Buffett's wealth is held
in Berkshire Hathaway, the publicly traded holding company he has run
The combined net worth of the 20 richest people is $676.8 billion. Nine
are Americans, including three from the family of Sam Walton, the
founder of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT)
Number seven is Larry Ellison, 67, chief executive officer of Redwood
Oracle Corp. (ORCL), the world's third-largest software maker after
Microsoft and SAP AG. (SAP) His $38 billion fortune puts him $4 billion
ahead of brothers Charles and David Koch, who each own 42 percent of
Koch Industries Inc., one of the biggest closely held companies in the
world by revenue. Charles, 76, and David, 71, control the Wichita,
Kansas, refiner and chemical maker.
Batista, 55, whose investments range from iron ore to coal, is worth
$29.8 billion, up $133.9 million on March 2. His fortune has grown 32
percent this year, the most on the list.
The House Wins
Sheldon Adelson, the casino magnate who owns 47 percent of Las Vegas
Sands Corp. (LVS), which operates resorts in Macau and Las Vegas, is
number 13 with $25.7 billion. Adelson, 78, and his family have pledged
at least $10 million to a super-PAC supporting Newt Gingrich, a
Republican presidential candidate.
Liliane Bettencourt, 89, who with her family owns 31 percent of
Paris-based cosmetics company
L'Oreal SA (OR), is last on the ranking. Bettencourt was the subject
of an international scandal in 2007 when her daughter, Francoise
Bettencourt Meyers, filed a lawsuit accusing a family friend,
photographer Francois- Marie Banier, of exploiting her mother's frail
state. Evidence later revealed Bettencourt had granted more than $1
billion in cash and gifts to Banier. In October, Meyers and two
grandsons became guardians of the clan's $22.4 billion fortune.
Mark Zuckerberg, the 27-year-old founder of Facebook Inc. (FB), the
world's largest social-networking company, didn't make the cut. Based on
a roughly $100 billion valuation the Menlo Park, California-based
company has been trading at in the private market, Zuckerberg's stake
may be worth $21 billion, or about 25 percent less than previous
estimates, once Facebook holds its initial public offering.
The reason: Facebook will issue more than 500 million shares of its
Class B stock at the offering, diluting Zuckerberg's ownership to 21
percent after he exercises 120 million options and sells about 42
million shares to cover the tax bill associated with the gain from those
Sweden's Ingvar Kamprad is the richest European, according to the index,
ranking fourth globally with a $42.5 billion net worth. Kamprad, 85,
controls Ikea Group, the world's largest furniture retailer, through a
series of trusts and foundations he asserts he doesn't own.
Bernard Arnault, the chairman of LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA
(MC) , places fifth. The majority of Arnault's $42.3 billion comes from
his stake in Paris-based LVMH, the world's largest maker of luxury
goods. Arnault, 63, controls about 46 percent of LVMH's outstanding
stock through his family group, according to the company's latest annual
Amancio Ortega, whose publicly traded Inditex SA (ITX) owns the Zara
clothing chain, is Spain's wealthiest individual and sixth in the world
with a $38.8 billion fortune. Ortega, 75, has invested dividends from
Arteixo-based Inditex into a real estate portfolio that owns office and
retail properties in the U.S. and Europe.
No Russians appear in the index as falling metals prices hurt the
fortunes of many of the richest oligarchs. Alisher Usmanov, 58, the
Muscovite who controls the Metalloinvest metals and mining company and
Digital Sky Technologies, which currently owns 5.5 percent of Facebook,
is Russia's wealthiest person thanks to a $20.1 billion fortune.
Mukesh Ambani, 54, leads Asians with a net worth of $26.8 billion, down
$185.4 million in a day. His fortune is up 25 percent this year,
according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, as his shares in India's
top company by market value, Mumbai-based
Reliance Industries Ltd. (RIL), have risen 17 percent.
Hong Kong's Li Ka-shing, nicknamed "Superman" by the local media for his
investing prowess, ranks second in the region, with $25.8 billion. Li,
83, owns large stakes in Hong Kong-based property developer Cheung Kong
Holdings Ltd. (1), Hong Kong shipping and ports operator Hutchison
Whampoa Ltd. (13) and Husky Energy Inc. (HSE), the Calgary-based energy
Lakshmi Mittal, the India-born chairman of ArcelorMittal (MT), the
world's biggest steelmaker, is the third-richest Asian, with holdings
valued at $23.6 billion. In addition to his ArcelorMittal stake, the
61-year-old London resident owns hundreds of millions of dollars in U.K.
On the rise: Gina Rinehart, the Australian mining heiress who is worth
$20.4 billion. Rinehart, 58, the daughter of the man who discovered the
mines that made Australia the world's biggest iron ore exporter,
inherited perpetual royalty rights to some of Rio Tinto Ltd. (RIO)'s
Hamersley mines in addition to other thermal and iron-ore deposits
throughout the country.
Soaring demand for coal and iron ore from China have made Rinehart's
assets attractive to acquisitive industrial companies. In separate deals
in the past year, steelmakers Posco and GVK Power & Infrasture Ltd. (GVKP)
agreed to pay a combined $2.9 billion for pieces of Rinehart's empire.
This article is written by Matthew G. Miller and Peter Newcomb of