BUSINESS tycoon Henry Sy once again made it to the Forbes’ list of the World’s Billionaires along with 13 other Filipinos.
Although his ranking slid because his $13.7 billion net worth in 2016 dropped to $12.7 billion, Sy maintained his ranking as the Philippines’ richest man, ranking 94th in Forbes’ 31st annual billionaires’ list.
Trailing Sy is John Gokongwei Jr. founder of JG Summit, whose ranking went up to 250 from last year’s 270 along with his net worth estimated at $5.8 billion.
Lucio Tan was the third richest Filipino with $3.7 billion net worth, $3 million lower than last year. He ranked No. 501 in the Forbes’ list.
Other Filipino businessmen who made it in the list were George Ty (No. 544, $3.5 billion), Enrique Razon Jr. (No. 564, $3.4 billion), Tony Tan Caktiong (No. 564, $3.4 billion), David Consunji (No. 630, $3.1 billion), Andrew Tan (No. 814, $2.5 billion), Robert Coyiuto Jr. (No. 1376, $1.5 billion), and former senator Manny Villar (No. 1376, $1.5 billion).
Ramon Ang of San Miguel Corporation is at No. 1468 with $1.4 billion, and Eduardo Cojuangco at No. 1678.
Former trade minister Robert Ongpin was ranked No. 1795 with $1.1 billion net worth.
Edgar Sia of DoubleDragon Properties was the youngest Filipino to be included in this year’s list, landing at the 1940th place with a net worth of $1 billion.
Gates still on top
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates topped the Forbes list of the world’s more than 2,000 billionaires, while US President Donald Trump slipped more than 200 spots.
Gates, whose wealth was estimated at $86 billion, led the list for the fourth straight year. He has been ranked as the richest person in the world for 18 of the past 23 years.
Gates was followed by Berkshire Hathaway chief Warren Buffett, whose net worth was estimated at $75.6 billion, a $14.8 billion jump from the 2016 list, despite his pledge to give away 99 percent of his wealth.
Others in the top 10 included Amazon founder Jeff Bezos who moved up to number three with the biggest gain of any person on the planet, a $27.6 billion increase to his fortune of $72.8 billion. Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg was number five and Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison was number seven.
There were 183 tech billionaires with a combined wealth of $1 trillion.
The global population of billionaires jumped 13 percent from last year to a record 2,043, the biggest annual increase in the 31 years since the magazine began compiling the list, Forbes said.
The US had the most billionaires with 565.
China was second with 319 billionaires, and Germany was third with 114.
Partial Trump slump
Trump slipped 220 spots on the list to 544 with an estimated $3.5 billion, a decline of $1 billion from last year. Forbes attributed Trump’s drop to sluggishness in the midtown Manhattan real estate market which is responsible for a disproportionate amount of his wealth.
“Forty percent of Donald Trump’s fortune is tied up in Trump Tower and eight buildings within one mile of it,” Forbes said. “Lately, the neighborhood has been struggling (relatively speaking).”
Forbes also said Trump’s wealth was hit by $66 million in political spending on his successful presidential campaign, as well as $25 million to settle litigation he allegedly ripped off students at Trump University.
The US president also would have missed the big stock market rally following his election, “assuming Trump sold off all of his stocks during last year’s campaign, as he has claimed,” the magazine said.
More self-made women
Rounding out the Forbes top 10, Amancio Ortega of Spanish apparel chain Zara was fourth; Mexican telecom tycoon Carlos Slim was sixth; the Koch brothers, US conservative political activists Charles and David, were eighth and ninth; and former New York City mayor and Bloomberg News founder Michael Bloomberg was 10th.
The highest ranking woman on the list was L’Oreal cosmetics shareholder Liliane Bettencourt, who was 14th with $39.5 billion. The only other woman in the top 20 was Alice Walton, only daughter of Wal-Mart Stores founder Sam Walton.
Overall, there were 227 women billionaires, the majority of whom inherited their wealth. But the list also contained 15 new “self-made” women, mostly from Asian countries, including Vietnam’s Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao of budget airline VietJet air.
Among other luminaries on the list, Alibaba founder Jack Ma was 23rd with $28.3 billion; activist investor and Trump deregulation adviser Carl Icahn was 55th with $16.6 billion; fashion designer Giorgio Armani was tied for 215th with $6.6 billion; Hollywood director Steven Spielberg was tied for 501st with $3.7 billion; and entertainment giant Oprah Winfrey was tied for 660th with $3 billion.
WITH A REPORT FROM AFP