'Forbes' List Names Richest Man In The World
The anticipated annual Forbes "World's Billionaires" list is out for 2011. Telecom giant Carlos Slim Helu and his family predictably took the number one spot for the second year running with $74 billion, a figure which further widens his lead over runner-up Bill Gates from last year. The third richest man in the world, Warren Buffet, is also a shoe-in, but there are a few surprises further down the ranks.
This is shaping up to be the year of Facebook, as the value of the social media network continues to grow. Six of Facebook's founders and early partners made the list, with CEO Mark Zuckerberg (pictured) sitting comfortably at spot 52 with $13.5 billion. Zuckerberg's fortune significantly jumped from last year's estimated $4 billion, which put him at position 212 on the Forbes list in 2010.
Other Facebook partners making the cut are co-founder Dustin Moskovitz, next in line with $2.7 billion, former Facebook president Sean Parker, who secured the 782nd spot with $1.6 billion, and investors Peter Thiel ($1.5 billion) and Yuri Milner ($1 billion).
Eduardo Saverin, who was cut out of Facebook early on, tied with Parker at spot 782 with $1.6 billion. In the Oscar-nominated Social Network about the development of the website, Parker and Saverin are portrayed as bitter rivals. Though the actual figure Saverin received as a settlement for his stake in the business has never been disclosed, it's safe to assume it was ample. Steve Forbes, the editor-in-chief of Forbes magazine, takes a pragmatic stance on the story. "Shed no tears for Eduardo," he told the Guardian. "If you do get to be thrown out, a billion dollars isn't a bad severance package."
The estimated number of billionaires in the world this year came in at 1,210 – more than there have ever been. —KIMBERLY STEELE