254 billionaire lose status, including Kanye West, Sam Bankman-Fried

254 billionaire lose status, including Kanye West, Sam Bankman-Fried

However, amidst the gloom and doom there is also a silver lining as over 1,000 billionaires have grown richer.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Wednesday, April 05, 2023, 01:47 PM IST
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254 billionaire lose status, including Kanye West, Sam Bankman-Fried | Canva

The world of billionaires is now facing the harsh reality of as geopolitical tensions rise, money becomes more expensive and the crypto bubble bursts. These issues together are unleashing havoc on both private and public markets. The Forbes' World's Billionaires 2023 list that was released on Tuesday showed that there is a decline in the number of billionaires worldwide with the number going down from 2,668 in 2022 to 2,640 this year. However, the total wealth of the billionaires have gone down by $500 billion to $12.2 trillion.

Top 25 poorer than they were in 2022

According to Forbes World’s Billionaires list the 25 richest people in the world are worth a collective $2.1 trillion, but since 2022 they have gone down a combined $200 billion from the earlier $2.3 trillion. This means that the top 25 are poorer than they were in 2022.

Jeff Bezos has lost the most as Amazon shares crashed by 38 per cent he was knocked to Number 2 in 2022 but this year he has fallen another spot to number 3. This drop lopped $57 billion from Bezos' fortune.

This year's second-biggest loser was Elon Musk, who had it worse. He lost his title of world's richest person after his pricey purchase of Twitter, which he funded in part by the sale of Tesla shares, helping to spook investors. Musk, who is worth $39 billion less than a year ago, is now in second position.

Additionally, nearly 254 billionaires well-known figures like Sam Bankman-Fried and Kanye West have lost their billionaire status.

According to the report, close to 19 founders of billion-dollar unicorns, Devin Finzer and Alex Atallah of NFT marketplace OpenSea, Pedro Franceschi, Henrique Dubugras of credit card fintech Brex have lost their billionaire status.

1,000 billionaires have grown richer

However, amidst the gloom and doom there is also a silver lining as over 1,000 billionaires have grown richer. Bernard Arnault, who has an estimated value of $211 billion, added another $53 billion to his fortune over the last year on the back of an 18 per cent surge in LVMH stock.

Whereas Indonesian coal magnate Low Tuck Kwong's net worth jumped by $21.8 billion to $25.5 billion. Even Spanish retail magnate Amacio Ortega was richer by $17.7 billion and Chinese e-commerce mogul Colin Zheng Huang added $18.9 billion.

Indian’s on the list

This year's list has a record number of Indian’s with close to 169 Indians, up from 166 from last year. Just like the top 25, the wealth of these Indians dropped close to 10 per cent to $675 billion.

The majority of that decline came from one high-profile saga: the stock rout of companies in the Adani Group, following a January report of fraud allegations by short-seller Hindenburg Research (allegations the Adani Group has denied).

With the sheen off the tech sector, software magnate Shiv Nadar's fortune tumbled 11 per cent from a year ago to $25.6 billion, but he retained his position as the country's third richest person.

Despite declining demand for Covid-19 vaccines, India's vaccine king Cyrus Poonawalla -- whose portfolio includes listed financial services firm Poonawalla Fincorp as well as privately held vaccine giant Serum Institute of India -- held onto his spot as the country's fourth richest person, though his net worth fell 7 per cent from a year ago to $22.6 billion.

Steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal was ranked at No. 5 followed by OP Jindal Group matriarch Savitri Jindal, Sun Pharma's Dilip Shanghvi and Radhakishan Damani, whose Avenue Supermarts owns the DMart retail chain.

Kumar Birla is ranked at number 9 and Uday Kotak at number 10.

Among the newcomers is the youngest Indian billionaire, 36-year-old Nikhil Kamath, who co-founded discount brokerage Zerodha with his older sibling Nithin Kamath (also a newcomer). The Bengaluru brothers are worth $1.1 billion and $2.7 billion, respectively.

Four people returned to the list this year after previously falling off, including Keshub Mahindra, chairman emeritus of Mahindra & Mahindra. The 99 year-old patriarch is the oldest Indian billionaire and has a net worth of $1.2 billion.

Twenty-three people from last year's list didn't make the cut this time, including metals magnate Anil Agarwal, who's weighed down by debt, and payments pioneer Vijay Shekhar Sharma, whose One97 Communications has seen its shares steadily fall since its IPO in late 2021 amid increasing competition for its Paytm payments app and prominent investors, such as SoftBank and Alibaba, paring their stakes.

With inputs from Agencies

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