With a fat net worth of about $73 billion, Mexican telecom mogul Carlos Slim topped the 2013 Forbes list of the world’s richest people for the fourth consecutive year.
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Slim, 74, grew his fortune by an estimated $4 billion in the last year thanks to impressive returns at Grupo Financiero Inbursa, the billionaire’s financial arm.
He also expanded his empire, pushing into Europe through an acquisition of a Dutch telecom company and a majority stake in Spanish soccer club Real Oviedo. Slim also owns significant stakes in retail, industrial, real estate, mining and infrastructure related companies.
Gates, who has increasingly taken a back seat at the software giant he founded, continues to focus on his Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which is attempting to eradicate diseases like polio and malaria. Gates has already donated more than $28 billion of his fortune.
Amancio Ortega vaulted up to the No. 3 spot in the Forbes list thanks to a $19.5 billion surge in his estimated net worth to $57 billion.
The self-made billionaire resigned as chairman of Inditex, the parent of Spanish clothing and accessories retailer Zara, but still owns a 60% stake in the company. Forbes estimates Ortega’s real-estate portfolio at $4 billion.
Warren Buffett, the CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, saw his net worth jump by $7.5 billion in the last year to an estimated $53.5 billion. The Oracle of Omaha made a big splash last month by teaming up with 3G Capital to acquire iconic food company H.J. Heinz (NYSE:HNZ) for $28 billion.
While Buffett acknowledged a “subpar” year for his Berkshire Hathaway, the 82-year-old billionaire pledged to resume his search for elephant-sized acquisitions.
The next three richest people in the world are all Americans: Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL) CEO Larry Ellison and Charles and David Koch.
According to Forbes, the Koch brothers have a net worth of $34 billion each, up from $31 billion a year ago. The brothers benefited from a $20 billion leap in the value of their Koch Industries, which raked in $115 billion in sales last year.
The rest of the top 10 Forbes list is rounded out by non-Americans. Hong Kong businessman Li Ka-shing has an estimated net worth of $31 billion, while Liliane Bettencourt, who with her family owns about 30% of L’Oreal, is the world’s richest woman with $30 billion.
Bernard Arnault, the chairman and CEO of French luxury goods maker LVMH, is ranked by Forbes as the world’s tenth richest person with a net worth of $29 billion, down from $41 billion a year ago.