1. The baby billionaires

The baby billionaires

We all know the richest people in the world—Bill Gates, Carlos Slim and Warren Buffett, the top three...

Published: February 1, 2015 2:07 AM

WE ALL know the richest people in the world—Bill Gates, Carlos Slim and Warren Buffett, the top three—but they’ve been on that list for very long and are now relatively old. So it seems the right time for a new generation to take over. And they are ready to. They may be a few billions short of the world’s richest, but are definitely on their way. Here are the world’s 10 youngest billionaires—in reverse order—as compiled by magazines like Forbes and Luxpresso. A few of them are obvious and well-known, but the majority are not.

Serra Sabanci: She is 37 years old and comes from Turkey’s most prominent business family, founded by her late father Ozdemir Sabanci. Sabanci Holding controls a range of business interests, from automobiles to construction equipment and synthetic fibres. Serra Sabanci is a board member, majority shareholder and a director of Sabanci Foundation. She took over the conglomerate after her father was assassinated in 1996 in the Sabanci Towers office in Istanbul by assassins hired by the Leftist militant group DHKP-C. Her net worth is an estimated $1 billion.

Fahd Hariri: He is just 30 years old and the youngest son of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri. He operates out of Paris even though his family’s main business interests—construction, telecom and real estate—are in West Asia. He inherited Saudi Oger, the sprawling conglomerate, after his father’s death in 2005. Hariri is also involved in the family’s TV network, Future TV, a satellite and terrestrial television network covering West Asia. His net worth is approximately $1.5 billion.

Eduardo Saverin: Well-known as the co-founder of Facebook, even though the 29-year-old American no longer has any executive role in the social network giant after a falling out with the other founders. His original 30% stake in Facebook is now down to 5%. A recent Forbes report suggested that Saverin has sold more shares recently and now holds a 2% stake in the company, which still puts his net worth at around $1.6 billion.

Albert von Thurn und Taxis: The only royal on the list, he is the prince of Thurn and Taxis in Germany, and the youngest billionaire, having officially inherited a vast fortune in 2001 on his 18th birthday along with the castle the family lives in. He is also well-known as a racing driver and was the winner of the German GT Championship in 2010. He inherited the fortune when he was eight years old on the death of his father, but his mother preserved the legacy till he was legally old enough. The family’s assets include 30,000 acres of woodland, one of the largest forest holdings in the country, apart from real estate, a valuable art collection and a tech company. His current net worth is approximately $2 billion.

Yoshikazu Tanaka: He is 34 years old and entirely self-made, having founded Gree, Japan’s largest social networking site. He started out working at Sony and then moved to an online shopping site, Rakuten. He quit in 2004 to set up Gree at a tech incubator and made it Japan’s biggest. He has since added mobile gaming to get into a lucrative market. In 2010, aged 33 years, he was ranked “Asia’s Youngest Self-Made Billionaire” and was selected as the “World’s Second-Youngest Self-Made Billionaire” after Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg. His net worth is around $2.2 billion.

Kostyantin Zhevago: The 37-year-old Ukranian is ranked as the youngest self-made billionaire in Europe and is certainly Ukraine’s youngest billionaire. His main business interest is iron ore through the company he started, Ferrexpo. Rising iron ore prices have increased his fortune and he has now got into politics, and also entered parliament. He is also into soccer and owns Ukranian club, FC Vorskla. His net worth is an estimated $2.4 billion.

Dustin Moskovitz: At 26 years, the American tech entrepreneur is acknowledged as the world’s youngest billionaire in history and is widely known as Mark Zuckerberg’s roommate in Harvard who co-founded Facebook along with two other classmates. He is just eight days younger to Zuckerberg and was Facebook’s first chief technology officer and vice-president of engineering. He quit Facebook in 2008 to co-found Asana, but his 2.34% share in Facebook still makes him the world’s youngest billionaire. Asana is a software company that allows individuals and small companies to collaborate. His net worth is approximately $8.1 billion.

Yang Huiyan: The second woman on the list, 29-year-old Yang is the main shareholder in Country Garden Holdings, China’s largest property developer. The company was founded by her father, but he transferred his holdings to his daughter in 2007, making her the fifth-richest person in Mainland China, the youngest female billionaire and the richest woman in Asia. Her net worth is estimated at $8.2 billion.

Sergey Brin: An American citizen who migrated from Russia, Brin, 37 years old, is the co-founder of search engine Google, one of the world’s most valuable companies, along with Larry Page. They met while on a computer science PhD programme at Stanford University. They dropped out in 1998 to start Google from a friend’s garage. His net worth is close to $30 billion.

Mark Zuckerberg: He is 30 years old and already has a movie (The Social Network) based on him and his Facebook journey, which started when he dropped out of Harvard. He became a billionaire in 2007 at the age of 23 years, then the world’s second-youngest. He is currently the chairman and CEO of Facebook, and his net worth is in the range of $33.1 billion.

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