Billionaire Gautam Adani on Friday briefly surpassed French business magnate Bernard Arnault to become the world’s second richest person. Adani and his family’s net worth surged to $155.4 billion, surpassing that of LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton SE, co-founder, chairman, CEO Arnault, according to the Forbes Real-Time Billionaires List. Adani is now just behind Tesla chief Elon Musk whose net worth stands at $273.5 billion. There are now two Indians in the top 10 in the Forbes list with Mukesh Ambani ranked 8th with a fortune of $92.2 billion. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is at number three with a net worth of $149.7 billion, followed by Microsoft founder Bill Gates ($105.3 billion), Larry Ellison ($98.3 billion) and ace Wall Street investor Warren Buffet ($96.5 billion).
It was only last month when Adani surpassed Gates to become the world’s third-richest person. The jump in Adani’s ranking in the Forbes is a result of the massive surge in his fortune due to Adani Group shares rallying this year. Except Adani and Musk, all the other billionaires in the top 10 saw a decline in their net worth on Friday. Adani’s fortune went up nearly $5 billion today, while Anault’s net worth slipped 1.97% by $3.1 billion. The key reason behind Adani climbing the ranks is the surge in Adani Group stocks in the recent past. Adani Enterprises, Adani Port and Adani Transmission were some of the Adani Group stocks that hit their record highs on the BSE in Friday’s early deals, leading to a surge in the group chairman’s real time net worth.
Despite some lawmakers and market watchers raising concerns over opaque shareholder structures and a lack of analyst coverage at the conglomerate’s companies, Adani group shares have soared. Some Adani group company shares have rallied more than 1,000% since 2020. According to a Bloomberg report, another reason why Adani has been able to move past some of the world’s richest US billionaires this year is partly because some of the US’ richest recently boosted their philanthropy. In July, Bill Gates said he was transferring $20 billion to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, while Warren Buffett has already donated more than $35 billion to the charity.
Adani has added $72 billion to his fortune so far this year, according to Bloomberg Billionaires index, only one besides Mukesh Ambani among the world’s 10 wealthiest people to have seen his net worth increase this year. Adani, 60, is the founder of conglomerate Adani Group, the largest port operator in India. The billionaire owns 75% stakes in Adani Enterprises, Adani Power and Adani Transmissions, according to March 2022 stock exchange filings. He also owns about 37% of Adani Total Gas, 65% of Adani Ports & Special Economic Zone, and 61% of Adani Green Energy.