Who are the world’s richest people? The 26 individuals including Amazon boss Jeff Bezos and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg who have as much wealth as the poorest 3.8billion

Just 26 billionaires now own as much wealth as the poorest 3.8billion people – half the world’s population – combined, according to Oxfam.

A new report by the charity says the 26 richest men and women in the world control a combined £1.1trillion – equal to everything owned by the bottom 50 per cent of all people. cemeqq

But Oxfam was criticised for alleged flaws in its report and for pushing a hard-Left agenda that goes beyond its remit as a fundraising body. The charity counts anyone whose debt is greater than their assets as poorer than someone who is debt-free.

For example, a Harvard law graduate with £100,000 of student debt who has just landed a job with a massive salary would be judged poorer than an Ethiopian farmer who is debt free.

Matthew Lesh, of the free market Adam Smith Institute, described the report as ‘complete hogwash’. But an Oxfam spokesman said: ‘The way our economies are organised, wealth is increasingly and unfairly concentrated among a privileged few while millions of people are barely subsisting.’

Here, MailOnline looks at the 26 wealthiest men and women in the world, according to the Forbes rich list – and starting with Amazon founder Jeff Bezos:

1) JEFF BEZOS

Age: 55

Wealth: £86.8billion

Lives: Seattle, Washington

Known for: Amazon founder

Family: Separated from wife MacKenzie Bezos; four children

Education: Bachelor of Arts/Science, Princeton University


Jeff Bezos owns 16 per cent of Amazon, which is now the world’s biggest internet company by revenue. As the world’s richest man, Oxfam said he could fund the health budget of Ethiopia with just 1 per cent of his estimated £87billion fortune. Mr Bezos founded Amazon in 1994, one year after marrying his novelist wife MacKenzie Bezos. They met while working at hedge fund DE Shaw in New York and the couple later moved to Seattle, where Mr Bezos started his business in his garage. However he now faces the most expensive divorce in history after revealing earlier this month that he would be separating from Mrs Bezos after 25 years of marriage.

2) BILL GATES

Bill and Melinda Gates run a foundation which invests in health and poverty projects +18
Bill and Melinda Gates run a foundation which invests in health and poverty projects

Age: 63

Wealth: £69.8billion

Lives: Medina, Washington

Known for: Microsoft co-founder

Family: Married to Melinda Gates, three children

Education: Harvard University (dropped out)


Bill Gates founded software firm Microsoft with Paul Allen in 1976, but now owns just 1 per cent of its shares. However he remains a board member and has donated £28billion worth of Microsoft stock to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the world’s largest private charitable foundation – which he chairs with his wife. It invests in health and poverty projects – and among its current interests are working with Rotary International to eliminate polio. Speaking about his wealth in 2011, he said: ‘I can understand wanting to have millions of dollars, there’s a certain freedom, meaningful freedom, that comes with that. But once you get much beyond that, I have to tell you, it’s the same hamburger.’

Warren Buffett and his wife Astrid Menks +18
Warren Buffett and his wife Astrid Menks

3) WARREN BUFFETT

Age : 88

Wealth : £65.1billion

Lives: Omaha, Nebraska

Known for: Berkshire Hathaway holding company

Family: Married to Astrid Menks, three children

Education: University of Nebraska Lincoln and Columbia University


Warren Buffett made his money through hugely successful investments which led him to be known as the ‘Oracle of Omaha’. He runs Berkshire Hathaway, which owns more than 60 firms including insurer Geico and battery maker Duracell. Mr Buffett has promised to give away more than 99 per cent of his fortune – and has so far donated £27billion.

Bernard Arnault with his wife Hélène Mercier +18
Bernard Arnault with his wife Hélène Mercier

4) BERNARD ARNAULT

Age: 69

Wealth : £55.8billion

Lives: Paris, France

Known for: LVMH

Family: Married to Hélène Mercier, five children

Education: Ecole Polytechnique de Paris


Bernard Arnault is head of LVMH, the world’s largest luxury-goods company, which includes Louis Vuitton, Dior, Moët & Chandon champagne and Hennessy cognac. He oversees 70 brands and is the richest person in fashion – and in France. Mr Arnault is married to Helene Mercier, a concert pianist whom he is said to have wooed by playing Chopin and other classical composers.

Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan +18
Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan

5) MARK ZUCKERBERG

Age: 34

Wealth : £55billion

Lives: Palo Alton, California

Known for: Facebook

Family: Married to Priscilla Chan, two children

Education: Harvard University (drop out)


Mark Zuckerberg launched Facebook with his college friends while at Harvard University in 2004, and is still the the social media giant’s chief executive. It was founded when he was just 19 as a network for students to match names with faces in class. Facebook had its initial public offering in 2012, in what was the most hotly anticipated share sale since Google’s in 2004. Similar to Warren Buffett, Mr Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan have pledged to give away 99 per cent of their Facebook stake over their lifetimes.

Amancio Ortega Gaona, who is the founding shareholder of the Inditex fashion group +18
Amancio Ortega Gaona, who is the founding shareholder of the Inditex fashion group

6) AMANCIO ORTEGA

Age: 82

Wealth: £54.3billion

Lives: La Coruna, Spain

Known for: Zara

Family: Married to Flora Pérez Marcote. three children

Education: Left school aged 14


The 82-year-old Spanish business tycoon is founder of the Inditex fashion group, which includes high street favorite Zara. His company also has brands including Massimo Dutti and Pull & Bear, with about 7,500 stores around the world. Mr Ortega, who is the world’s wealthiest retailer, has also invested heavily in real estate in London, Madrid and New York.

Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim Helu controls Latin America’s biggest mobile telecom firm +18
Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim Helu controls Latin America’s biggest mobile telecom firm

7) CARLOS SLIM HELU

Age: 78

Wealth: £52billion

Lives: Mexico City, Mexico

Known for: America Movil

Family: Widowed from Soumaya Domit, six children

Education: Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico


The Mexican business magnate was the world’s richest person from 2010 to 2015. He has made his fortune from buying into Mexican companies, and accounts for 40 per cent of the listings on the Mexican Stock Exchange. He and his family control America Movil, Latin America’s biggest mobile telecom firm. He has a museum in Mexico City dedicated to his huge art collection which was designed by his son-in-law.

Koch brothers Charles (left) and David (right)
Koch brothers Charles (left) and David (right)

8 & 9) CHARLES AND DAVID KOCH

Ages: Charles, 82; David, 78

Wealth: £46.5billion each

Lives: Charles – New York; David – Wichita, Kansas

Known for: Koch Industries

Family: Charles – married to Liz Koch, two children; David – married to Julia Flesher, three children

Education: Both at Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Brothers David and Charles Koch share majority control of Koch Industries, the second-largest privately held firm in the US. The company, which operates pipelines and makes toilet paper among other interests, has revenues of £78billion. Charles has funded various think tanks, while David is a well-known philanthropist.

California-based tycoon Larry Ellison co-founded software company Oracle in 1977 +18
California-based tycoon Larry Ellison co-founded software company Oracle in 1977

10) LARRY ELLISON

Age: 74

Wealth: £45.3billion

Lives: Woodside, California

Known for: Oracle software

Family: Divorced from Melanie Craft, two children

Education: University of Chicago (drop out)


The 74-year-old American co-founded software company Oracle in 1977, before giving up his chief executive role in 2014. However he is still board chairman as well as being the owner of the sixth largest Hawaiian island, Lanai, and his own racing yacht team. Among his philanthropic acts was a £155million donation pledge to a cancer treatment centre in California in 2016.

Michael Bloomberg and partner Diana Taylor +18
Michael Bloomberg and partner Diana Taylor

11) MICHAEL BLOOMBERG

Age: 76

Wealth: £38.8billion

Lives: New York

Known for: Bloomberg LP

Family: In a relationship with Diana Taylor, two children

Education: Johns Hopkins University and Harvard Business School


Michael Bloomberg co-founded media company Bloomberg LP in 1981, and still has an 88 per cent stake. He spent three terms as New York City mayor between 2002 and 2013, before becoming a major philanthropist. Mr Bloomberg, who owns six homes including one in London, attended the Conservative party conference in Blackpool in 2007.

Larry Page, the co-founder of Google +18
Larry Page, the co-founder of Google

12) LARRY PAGE

Age: 45

Wealth: £37.8billion

Lives: Palo Alto, California

Known for: Google

Family: Married to Lucinda Southworth, two children

Education: University of Michigan and Stanford University


Larry Page co-founded search engine Google in 1998 with Sergey Brin, who was a fellow PhD student at Stanford University in California. They invited Google’s PageRank algorithm together – and Mr Page is now chief of its parents company Alphabet. He is known to be a keen backer of green energey, with his homes using fuel cells and geothermal energy.

Sergey Brin and his ex-wife Anne Wojcicki +18
Sergey Brin and his ex-wife Anne Wojcicki

13) SERGEY BRIN

Age: 45

Wealth: £36.8billion

Lives: Los Altos, California

Known for: Google

Family: Divorced from Anne Wojcicki, two children

Education: Stanford University and University of Maryland


Sergey Brin is president of Google’s parent firm Alphabet, and was previously behind the Google X division, which built the unsuccesful Google glasses. He co-founded Google in 1998 with Larry Page, whome he met while studing computer science at university. Moscow-born Mr Brin is the richest immigrant in America.

14, 15 & 16) JIM, ROB & ALICE WALTON

(From left) Rob, Alice and Jim Walton appear at a Walmart shareholders meeting last June
(From left) Rob, Alice and Jim Walton appear at a Walmart shareholders meeting last June

Ages: Jim, 70; Rob, 74; Alice, 69

Wealth: £36billion each

Lives: Jim and Rob – Bentonville, Arkansas; Alice – Fort Worth, Texas

Known for: Walmart

Family: Jim – married to Lynne McNabb, four children; Rob – married to Melani Lowman-Walton, three children; Alice – divorced, no children

Education: Jim and Rob – University of Arkansas; Alice – Trinity University


The Walmart heirs have a combined wealth of more than £100billion, thanks to the success of the world’s largest retailer by revenue. Sam Walton founded Walmart in 1962 – and two of his children, Rob and James, have been involved in running it. His third, Alice, has not taken an active role and instead has worked in the arts. His fourth child John died in 2005 aged 58.

Ma Huateng – also known as Pony Ma, chairs Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings
Ma Huateng – also known as Pony Ma, chairs Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings

17) MA HUATENG

Age: 47

Wealth: £35.1billion

Lives: Shenzhen, China

Known for : Tencent Holdings

Family: Married to Wang Danting

Education: Shenzhen University


Ma Huateng – also known as Pony Ma, who chairs Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings, is known for his secretive and low-key lifestyle. His company’s social messaging app WeChat has more than one billion users. Tencent is also one of the world’s largest video game publishers, and is behind the likes of Call of Duty and Dungeon Fighter Online.

Françoise Bettencourt-Meyers (right) inherited the L’Oreal fortune after the death of her mother Liliane (left) aged 97 in 2017 +18
Françoise Bettencourt-Meyers (right) inherited the L’Oreal fortune after the death of her mother Liliane (left) aged 97 in 2017

18) FRANCOISE BETTENCOURT MEYERS

Age: 65

Wealth: £32.7billion

Lives: Paris, France

Known for: L’Oreal

Family: Married to Jean-Victor Meyers, two children


Françoise Bettencourt-Meyers inherited the L’Oreal fortune after the death of her mother Liliane Bettencourt aged 97 in 2017. This has led her to vie with Walmart heiress Alice Walton for the title of the world’s richest woman. The Bettencourt family founded L’Oreal and has a 33 per cent stake in the firm. She owns properties including a villa in Neuilly-sur-Seine and secluded island in the Seychelles.

Mukesh Ambani chairs and runs the Indian oil and gas giant Reliance Industries +18
Mukesh Ambani chairs and runs the Indian oil and gas giant Reliance Industries

19) MUKESH AMBANI

Age: 61

Wealth: £31.1billion

Lives: Mumbai, India

Known for: Reliance Industries

Family: Married to Nita Ambani, three children

Education: University of Bombay


Mukesh Ambani, who chairs and runs the oil and gas giant Reliance Industries, a company founded in India by his late father Dhirubhai in 1966 as a small textile manufacturer. The firm launched 4G phone service Jio in 2016, sparking a price war through it offering very cheap data services and smartphones. Last month Mr Ambani gave away his daughter Isha to billionaire industrialist Ajay Piramal’s son Anand in a wedding estimated to have cost nearly £80billion.

Jack Ma, co-founder of the Alibaba Group +18
Jack Ma, co-founder of the Alibaba Group

20) JACK MA

Age: 54

Wealth: £30.2billion

Lives: Hangzhou, China

Known for: Alibaba Group

Family: Married to Zhang Ying, three children

Education: Hangzhou Teacher’s Institute


Jack Ma is the co-founder and chair of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, although he is set to step down as chairman this September. Five years ago in New York, the group had the world’s biggest public stock offering on record, raising £20billion. The former English teacher, who also has a stake in entertainment firm Huayi Brothers, owns a vineyard in France and is known to be a martial arts fan.

Sheldon Adelson, the chief executive and chairman of casino firm Las Vegas Sands +18
Sheldon Adelson, the chief executive and chairman of casino firm Las Vegas Sands

21) SHELDON ADELSON

Age: 85

Wealth: £29.8billion

Lives: Las Vegas, Nevada

Known for: Las Vegas Sands

Family: Married to Miriam Ochsorn, five children

Education: City College of New York (drop out)


Sheldon Adelson, the chief executive and chairman of casino firm Las Vegas Sands, is the son of immigrants from Lithuania and Wales. He first got into the casino industry in 1988 and made his first fortune in 1995 when selling a computer trade show for £670million. One of his first ventures was selling newspapers on a street corner in Boston aged 12, after buying the rights for $200 thanks to a loan from his uncle.

Steve Ballmer is the former chief of Microsoft +18
Steve Ballmer is the former chief of Microsoft

22) STEVE BALLMER

Age: 62

Wealth: £29.8billion

Lives: Hunts Point, Washington

Known for: Microsoft

Family: Married to Connie Snyder, three children

Education: Harvard University


Steve Ballmer was chief executive of Microsoft between 2000 and 2014, through a time that saw Google advance in search engines and Apple in mobile phones. When Mr Ballmer – who was in the same class as Bill Gates at Harvard – retired he bought the NBA basketball team Los Angeles Clippers for more than £1.5billion.

Li Ka-shing is the chairman of CK Hutchison Holdings +18
Charasmatic businessman Li Ka-shing is the former chairman of CK Hutchison Holdings

23) LI KA-SHING

Age: 90

Wealth: £27.1million

Lives: Hong Kong

Known for: CK Hutchison Holdings

Family: Widowed from Chong Yuet Ming, two children

Education: Left school aged 15


Li Ka-shing started Cheung Kong plastics aged 21 with £5,000 in savings and loans from family members – and turned into one of Asia’s top businessman. Dubbed ‘Superman’, he said it took him five minutes to decide to invest in Facebook in 2007 despite its lack of revenue. He retired as chairman of CK Hutchison Holdings last May but is still an advisor.

Property tycoon Hui Ka Yan is a football fan
Property tycoon Hui Ka Yan is a football fan

=24) HUI KA YAN

Age: 60

Wealth: £23.5billion

Lives: Shenzhen, China

Known for: Evergrande Group

Family: Yang Huiying, two children

Education: Wuhan University of Science and Technology


Property tycoon Hui Ka Yan, also known as Xu Jiayin, is the founder of developer Evergrande Group, based in the southern city of Guangzhou. The former steel technician is known as an avid supporter of Chinese football and has invested in the sport domestically.

Lee Shau-Kee, who is a father of five, co-founded property developer Sun Hung Kai
Lee Shau-Kee, who is a father of five, co-founded property developer Sun Hung Kai

=24) LEE SHAU-KEE

Age: 90

Wealth: £23.5billion

Lives: Hong Kong

Known for: Henderson Land Development

Family: Divorced, five children

Education: Wuhan University of Science and Technology


Lee Shau-Kee, who is a father of five, co-founded property developer Sun Hung Kai – before starting Henderson Land Development in 1976. He grew up in a poor family but has donated more than £300million of his wealth towards education.

Wang Jianlin, Dalian Wanda Group chairman
Wang Jianlin, Dalian Wanda Group chairman

26) WANG JIANLIN

Age: 64

Wealth: £23.5billion

Lives: Beijing, China

Known for: Dalian Wanda Group

Family: Married to Lin Ning, one child

Education: Liaoning University


Wang Jianlin is chairman of commericial real estate developer Dalian Wanda Group, which has hundreds of plazas in China. The tycoon, who served in the Chinese military from 1970 to 1986, also owns US cinema chain AMC and film studio Legendary Entertainment through his group.