Gary Wang, co-founder and chief technology officer of Bahamas-based cryptocurrency exchange FTX, has been crowned the world’s richest billionaire under the age of 30 with a net worth of $5.9 billion, according to Forbes’ 2022 World Billionaires List.
This year’s list, which used stock prices and exchange rates from March 11 to calculate the personal fortunes of the world’s richest people, features 12 billionaires aged under 30 who have a combined net worth of $25.8bn. Seven of them are self-made, four dropped out of college and one is a teenager.
“Clinching the title of the world’s youngest billionaire for the second year running is 19-year-old Kevin David Lehmann, worth an estimated $2.4bn,” Forbes said in its annual report.
“The list’s only teenager inherited a 50 per cent stake in German drugstore chain dm-drogerie markt from his father, an early investor in the business, but neither are involved in its daily operations.”
On Wednesday, Forbes declared Elon Musk, the founder and chief executive of electric car maker Tesla, the world’s richest person with a net worth of $219bn.
The Bloomberg Billionaires Index also named Mr Musk the world’s richest person at the end of 2021, estimating his personal fortune at $273.5bn. Mr Musk was this week appointed to Twitter's board after emerging as the biggest single shareholder in the microblogging platform on Monday.
The Russia-Ukraine crisis, Covid-19 pandemic and volatile stock markets have taken a toll on the combined wealth of the world’s richest people. It slipped 3 per cent to $12.7 trillion over the past year, from a record $13.1tn in 2021.
There are 2,668 billionaires in the world, down from an all-time high of 2,755 last year. The top 12 under 30 list represents less than 0.5 per cent of the world’s billionaires, Forbes said.
“It’s been a mixed year overall for this elite [under 30] cohort,” Forbes said.
“While there are two more billionaires under 30 this year than in 2021, this group is collectively worth $3.7bn less than last year’s group, due in large part to choppy equity markets and [FTX co-founder] Sam Bankman-Fried’s graduation from the under-30 ranks.”
Coming in at number 2 on the under-30 list is Norway’s fishing farm heir Gustav Magnar Witzoe, 28, with a net worth of $4.5bn, followed by Mr Lehmann in third place.
In fourth place with a $2bn fortune is Ryan Breslow, 27, who dropped out of Stanford University to launch payment software company Bolt. Completing the top five is Austin Russell, 27, founder and chief executive of automotive sensor company Luminar Technologies, with a net worth of $1.6bn.
Only two women featured on this year’s list. Norwegian sisters Alexandra and Katharina Andresen, who were ranked in ninth and 10th place, respectively, each have a personal fortune of $1.3bn.
The world's top 12 richest people under 30 and their net worth
- Gary Wang: $5.9bn
- Gustav Magnar Witzoe: $4.5bn
- Kevin David Lehmann: $2.4bn
- Ryan Breslow: $2bn
- Austin Russell: $1.6bn
- Pedro Franceschi: $1.5bn
- Wang Zelong: $1.5bn
- Henrique Dubugras: $1.5bn
- Alexandra Andresen: $1.3bn
- Katharina Andresen: $1.3bn
- Stanley Tang: $1.2bn
- Andy Fang: $1.1bn