Mukesh Ambani remains the richest Asian for the second year in a row, with a net worth of $103 billion, and the only Indian to rank among the ten richest billionaires of the world, as per the 2022 Hurun Global Rich List. Meanwhile, Gautam Adani became the biggest wealth creator in the world, adding ₹49 billion to take his net worth to $81 billion.
Ambani, who heads Reliance Industries, saw his wealth rise 24% on an annual basis as his company’s shares increased 22% after the second Covid-19 wave abated and retail and energy businesses of his conglomerate rebounded. He was ranked 9th among the top 10 billionaires of the world.
Meanwhile, Gautam Adani, who ranks 12th on the Hurun rich list, saw his wealth rise 153% on-year to become the second-richest Asian after Ambani. The Indian business mogul added ₹6,000 crore to his wealth every week over the last year. With this, he also became the best wealth gainer for the year, leaving behind Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Bernard Arnault and Warren Buffet. After his Adani Green was listed on the stock exchanges, Adani saw his wealth rise five times to ₹81 billion from ₹17 billion in 2020.
After Ambani and Adani, HCL’s Shiv Nadar and family became the third-richest billionaires from India with a net worth of $28 billion. Last year in August, HCL Technologies became the fourth Indian IT firm to hit the market capitalisation of ₹3 lakh crore after TCS, Infosys and Wipro.
Hurun noted that the number of Indian billionaires with wealth in the higher thresholds has grown over the years. India now has 249 billionaires out of which only 15 are women. The number of billionaires in the country has doubled every five years over the past decade.
Most of the Indian billionaires come from healthcare (46), consumer goods (29) and chemicals (23). Over the last 10 years, Indian billionaires have added ₹700 billion to their cumulative wealth – equivalent to Switzerland’s GDP and twice the entire economy of UAE.
With 215 Indian billionaires living in the country, Mumbai is their preferred destination, with 72 of them calling it home. Delhi and Bengaluru are the next favourites with 51 and 28 billionaires, respectively.
China, on the other hand, has five times more billionaires than India at 1,133, while the United States accounts for 716 billionaires in the rich list. There are 3,381 billionaires in the world, up 153 from last year.
Despite the never-ending crises, wealth records have once again reached new records. Even amidst the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, the total wealth of billionaires across the globe increased 4% to $15.2 trillion.
Most of the billionaires still come from the financial services sector, accounting for 9.3% of the world’s billionaires. As the pandemic continues, healthcare replaced real estate for the second spot among sectors. Meanwhile, retail overtook consumer goods for the fourth spot.
Energy, especially renewable, had a good year as the shift towards greener fuels assumed prominence. Biotech, luxury goods, semiconductors, software services and shipping also saw growth in the past year. Meanwhile, Chinese internet platforms, real estate, education, off-patient drugs and vaping industry, and Russian billionaires had a bad year in terms of wealth.