There will always be an enduring fascination with the REALLY rich guys who make up the list of “Richest Men in the World.” The current list in the Forbes top 5 has seen several mega billionaires trading places this few months alone. Fueled by soaring commodity and telco stock prices (albeit fluctuating), the top billionaire list has brought out several hitherto “unknown” names to the fore – Carlos Slim, and Mukesh Ambani.
In July this year, Carlos Slim emerged seemingly out of nowhere, to overtake Bill Gates as the world’s richest man – after more than a decade of dominance by Gates. Some sources reported that Slim’s wealth was estimated at $67 billion, ahead of Gates by nearly 9 billion. Now that’s 9 BILLION, mind you.
A couple of days ago, the Forbes top 5 list was reshuffled, when an Indian billionaire with interests in construction, textile, and petroleum industries, Mukesh Ambani, appeared to have overtaken both Slim and Gates. This was widely reported in many Indian newspapers, but subsequently watered down by Ambani’s company, Reliance Industries. Mukesh is not the only Indian up there.
These are interesting times with such a fluid situation, that no one at this point in time, really knows who is exactly the world’s richest man right now. It might not be anything remotely connected with you and me, but it’s still an entertaining, trivial, frolic in financial fantasy. A slight change in stock prices could send any of these guys straight to the top. But one thing’s for certain, the world is going to have to do away with the long held notion of “Worlds Richest Man” revolving around Bill Gates, alone.
How the times have changed.