Top 21 Self-Made Billionaires and How They Made Their Wealth

Wealth X research has shown that most of the billionaires are actually self made, 68% to be precise. There are billionaires who made the top of the richest people in the world list but some of them have inherited wealth. However, some others began from zero and built all of their fortunes on their own. Here we share the stories of 21 self made billionaires and how they made their wealth.

1. Jack Ma

Jack Ma is the third richest person in China and probably everyone has heard of this person. He was an English teacher and then became the co-founder of Alibaba, one of the world’s largest e-commerce companies.

He failed three times to get into college and has faced rejection from over 30 jobs after graduating. He eventually made it all worth it with Alibaba. His company became one of the most valuable technology businesses in with world after raising $25 billion in 2014. Jack Ma has a net worth of $37 billion and is one of the top self made billionaires in the world.

2. Jeff Bezos

Jeff Bezos is on the list of top self made billionaires and is in fact the richest person in the world. He has a net worth of $198.3 billion. Bezos is the CEO and founder of Amazon.

He founded e-commerce giant Amazon in 1994 in his garage in Seattle. In July 2021, he stepped down as CEO to become executive chairman on Amazon. In the pandemic, Amazon thrived and it grew to raise $386 billion as people made online purchasing from homes. Bezos also owns the Washington Post and Blue Origin, an aerospace company.

3. Bill Gates

Bill Gates is #4 on the list of the richest people in the world and has an estimated net worth of $139.2 billion. He built his fortune from a software company named Microsoft. Bill Gates co-founded Microsoft with Paul Allen. Gates has shifted at least $5.7 billion worth of shares in public companies to Melinda. He also invested in companies including Canadian National Railway and AutoNation.

4. Warren Buffet

Warren Buffet is famously recognized as the ‘Oracle of Omaha’. He has made most of his wealth through investing and he is one of the most successful investors of all time. Warren Buffet is the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, which owns more than 60 companies including Duracell, Dairy Queen, etc. Buffet has a net worth of $104.9 billion.

He attended the New York Institute of Finance to learn about economics and then he began various business partnerships. Till now, he has donated more than $45 billion and he has promised to donate over 99% of his wealth.

5. Amancio Ortega

Amancio Ortega is #11 among the richest people in the world. He has a net worth of $74.6 billion. Amancio Ortega is originally from Spain and is one of the wealthiest clothing retailers in the world. He has pioneered in fast fashion as he cofounded Inditex known for the Zara fashion chain.

He owns about 60% of Madrid-listed Inditex which has 8 brands which include Massimo Dutti, Pull and Bear, and other 7500 stores around the world. Amancio Ortega earns $400 million in dividends in a year.

6. Patrick Drahi

Patrick made his way in business with clever investments in telecoms. He has built a fortune of $7.6 billion in his career. He is the founder and owner of multination Altice NV, which he total private at a $7.3 billion valuation.

Drahi created Altice with more than 20 acquisitions of withering cable and mobile operators and expanded with highly leveraged deals. Now, his company is spanning France, Israel, the USA, and Portugal.

7. Aliko Dangote

Aliko Dangote is the founder of Dangote Cement, the country’s biggest producer, and is also the wealthiest person in Africa. Along with this, he also diverse business interests in oil, gas, flour, sugar, and more telecommunications. He started at the age of 21 when he borrowed $3000 from his uncle to import and sell agricultural commodities in Nigeria. It became a success and Dangote was able to repay the loan in three months. Eventually, he moved on to other commodities and achieved success. Currently, he has a net worth of $12.5 billion.

8. Sameer Gehlaut

Sameer Gehlaut is the founder of Indiabulls, an Indian conglomerate. Sameer’s Housing Finance division is the second biggest mortgage lender in the country. He is an engineer from IIT, Delhi and he started online brokerage Indiabulls with two college pals in 1999.

He took the company public in 2004 and ventured into real estate. He also expanded his business into consumer lending, lighting, pharmaceuticals, and heavy equipment rental. He is also building a Mandarin Oriental hotel in London’s Mayfair area. His net worth is estimated to be $2.1 billion.

9. Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi

Al Moudi, an Ethiopian-Saudi billionaire has most of his wealth in mining. His companies are also active in construction, energy, agriculture, healthcare, manufacturing, and hotels among other sectors. His firm Saudi Star Agricultural Development cultivates thousands of acres of land for coffee, tea, fruits, vegetables, flowers, rice fields, etc.

He began his journey of money with construction in Saudi Arabia. Also, he is the owner of oil refiner Preem which is the largest fuel company in Sweden. Al Amoudi has a net worth of $8.1 billion.

10. Leonardo Del Vecchio

Leonardo Del Vecchio has an estimated net worth of $33.6 billion. He founded eyewear giant Luxottica in 1961 when he was 25. In the coming years, Luxottica bought Ray-Ban, Oakley, Sunglass Hut and grew to make glasses for almost every brand including even Chanel and Bulgari.

Leonardo was sent to an orphanage at age of 7 and later he began working at a car and eyewear parts factory at age 14 to put himself in design school. He started with nothing and now is one of the top self made billionaires in the world.

11. Zhong Huijuan

Zhong Huijuan is the Chair of Chinese drugmaker Hasoh Pharmaceuticals Group. It produces a range of different medications for the treatment of diabetes, cancer, and other illnesses.

She is one of the top self-made female billionaires and has a net worth of $10 billion. She owns three-quarters of the company with her daughter, Sun Yuan. Her husband is also in the pharmaceutical business and is a billionaire himself.

12. Kylie Jenner

Kylie Jenner is one of the top young self made billionaires. She made it to the top of the self-made billionaire list just when she was 22 years old. She has personal estimated assets worth $1.1 billion. Jenner became rich from her company, Kylie Cosmetics, which is valued at $1.2 billion. In 2019, she sold 51% of the company to Coty. Kylie Jenner has acquired most of her wealth comes from Kylie Cosmetics. She also has a skincare line, swim line, and more which adds to her riches.

13. Ritesh Agarwal

Ritesh Agarwal has a net worth of $1.1 billion. He is the founder and CEO of OYO Rooms. The 26-year-old college dropout is the only top Indian youngest self made billionaire. In July 2019, Ritesh Agarwal bought $2 billion in shares in the company which tripled his stake.

OYO Rooms is a network of 2200 hotels in 154 cities across India with 1500 employees and monthly revenues of $3.5m. In a country that does not have a steady budget of hotel chains, Oyo made an effort and booked a million nights in a month.

14. Evan Spiegel

Evan Spiegel is a 29-year-old billionaire with a net worth of $9.7 billion. He is the co-founder and CEO of the American social media company Snapchat. His company, Snap Inc. has a valuation of around $88.15 billion. Snapchat is loved by teens and even adults everywhere.

Spiegel has donated more than $280 million to Snap stock. Murphy and Spiegl have both decided to donate $13 million shares to the Snap foundation.

15. John Collison

John Collison has a real-time net worth of $9.5 billion. He is the co-founder and President of Stripe which accepts payments online. In MIT, Cambridge, John, and his brother thought of the idea of Stripe. The first payment of the company was processed while they were both out on vacation. In September 2019, Stripe raised $250 million in funding with a valuation of $35 billion.

When both the brothers were in high school, they founded a company named Shuppa in 2007 which was later sold for $5 million while they were still teenagers.

16. Bobby Murphy

Spiegel recruited Bobby Murphy after they finished work on a failed startup called Future Freshman. He made a disappearing image messaging app which was later named Snapchat. So, Murphy co-founded Snapchat with 293 million daily users.

The real-time net worth of Bobby Murphy is $10.4 billion. Murphy has derived most of his wealth from a 14% stake in Snap. Snapchat rejected Facebook’s offer to be bought at $3 billion in 2013 and has thrived ever since.

17. Patrick Collison

Patrick Collison is the co-founder and CEO of Stripe, the company he started with his younger brother, John in 2010. He founded Fast Grants to increase COVID-19 related science with Tyler Cowen in 2020. Patrick has an estimated net worth of $9.5 billion.

Stripe raised an $850 million funding round with an evaluation of $36 billion in April 2020. Collision brothers got the idea of creating Stripe while he was at MIT in Cambridge. Patrick is responsible for handling engineering and serves as the public face of the company.

18. Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg is one of the most famous and worldwide known billionaires because of his social media platform. He is the chief executive and founder of the largest social media platform in the world, Facebook. He has a net worth of $118 billion. He took Facebook public in 2012 and now her owns about 12% of the company’s stock.

Mark Zuckerberg started Facebook in 2004 at Harvard when he was just 19. He did this for students to match names with photos of his classmates and now he has come a long way. Recently he purchased Instagram and Whatsapp and increased his wealth. Facebook has now been changed into Meta.

19. Dustin Moskovitz

Dustin Moskovitz is an American entrepreneur and billionaire who co-founded Facebook with Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, and Chris Hughes. Later in 2008, he left Facebook and co-founded Asana, a workflow software company. Dustin has a net worth of $20.4 billion. Asana went public in September 2020, at a market value of about $5.5 billion in the direct listing. However, most of his net worth comes from the 2% stake in Facebook.

Dustin has built a philanthropic foundation Good Ventures with his wife, which donates millions of dollars for malaria eradication and marriage equality.

20. Nathan Blecharczyk

Nathan is a 37-year-old American billionaire businessman. He is co-founder and chief strategy officer of Airbnb and chairman of Airbnb China. Nathan started his business journey in high school by making money from his own software business. He attended Harvard and continued writing programs. In 2008, Nathan partnered with Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia to found Airbnb and became the chief technology officer of the company. Nathan Blecharczyk has an estimated net worth of US$ 11.4 billion.

21. Pavel Durov

Pavel Durov is a Russian-born French entrepreneur. He is known for being the founder of social networking site VK and later of Telegram Messenger. Telegram is quite popular and has more than 500 million users worldwide. In 2015, Pavel Durov sold a 12% stake in the social media network for around $300 million.

Later he also tried to launch the ‘Gram’ cryptocurrency and TON platform, raising $1.7 billion startups. He has a net worth of $17.2 billion. Durov is known as Russia’s Zuckerberg because he created Vkontakte, Russia’s biggest social network.

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