Thursday 14 November 2019

Forbes' rich list names five Irish billionaires

Denis O'Brien pictured recently during an interview at the GETHealth, Global Education & Technology Health summit at the Printworks in Dublin Castle.
Denis O'Brien pictured recently during an interview at the GETHealth, Global Education & Technology Health summit at the Printworks in Dublin Castle.
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates topped the Forbes list of the world's billionaires for the second consecutive year (AP)
Bill Gates
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Microsoft founder Bill Gates is the world's richest person with a fortune of $79bn, and Indian tycoon Pallonji Mistry is Ireland's richest citizen.

Despite the financial crisis and fears for global growth, the number of billionaires surged to a record 1,826 last year, including five from Ireland, according to the 2015 Forbes Rich List.

The number of billionaires is up almost 200 since last year.

The wealthiest Irish citizen to have been born here is businessman Denis O'Brien, according to Forbes, which puts the Digicel founder's fortune at $6.8bn.

Glen Dimplex founder Martin Naughton has a $2.8bn fortune, Forbes said.

Campbells Soup heir John Dorrance III, an American-born Irish citizen, is worth $2.6bn.

Businessman Dermot Desmond, who created a private equity investments empire after founding and selling NCB Stockbrokers, has a $1.8bn fortune, according to Forbes.

Read more: Millionaire central: Top ten cities with the richest residents

Pallonji Mistry is little known here, but as head of the family-controlled Shapoorji Pallonji conglomerate he presides over business interests ranging from construction and oil to Tetley Tea and Jaguar Land Rover.

He qualifies as Irish as the husband of Dublin-born Patsy Perin Dubash. His fortune of $16.3bn, according to Forbes, makes him the 55th wealthiest person on earth.

Bill Gates's $79bn tally puts him "just" $2bn ahead of the $77bn fortune of Mexican telecoms billionaire Carlos Slim, according to the annual rich list. Bill Gates has been ranked at the top of the listing for 16 of the last 20 years, even though the philanthropic Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation gives away billions to charity each year.

Men dominate the rich list, which includes fewer than 200 women. The highest placed is Wal-Mart stores heiress Christy Walton, who comes in at eighth with a $41.7bn fortune.

The co-founders of mobile messaging service Snapchat, Evan Spiegel (24) and Bobby Murphy (25,) are the youngest billionaires, worth $1.5bn each, according to Forbes.

The US has the most (536) billionaires, followed by China with 213.

Irish Independent

Also in Business