Bill Gates is undoubtedly one of the richest men in the telecom industry; however, he has recently been overtaken by a man that has held the position for the past four years. Read about the 10 richest people in the entire telecoms industry, around the globe, you may be surprised.
10. Digicel’s Denis O’Brien: Worth $5.2 billion
Founding Digicel in 2001, Denis O’Brien is working to become the number one mobile phone operator in all of Central America, and all of the surrounding regions. Since 2001, this company has quickly become the number one provider in all of the Central American territories and the Caribbean, with a current subscriber total of 13 million.
The company is based in Jamaica, and it holds a 70 percent market share of all of the countries telecoms industry. Additionally, Digicel has more than two million active subscribers in the nation of Haiti alone.
9. Vimpelcom’s Pyotr Aven: Worth $5.4 billion
Heading the Alfa Bank Group, Pyotr Aven is seen more on the banking side of this company. While this position has made him a considerable amount of wealth, Pyotr has also benefited from the sale of the TNK-BP, and added a total of $2 billion to his own personal wealth.
8. Free Mobile’s Xavier Niel: Worth $6.6 billion
The latest addition to the rich list of Forbes, Xavier Niel’s claim to significant wealth only dates back to 2010. He is the founding member of the Free network, which is based in France, and that originally entered the ISP, or Internet Service Provider, space by offering consumers a much cheaper service when compared to all of the other options and competitors that are in the market today. This entire business model has provided the foundation for all of Xavier’s business since then and seen the company work to reinvent the entire industry over and over again.
7. MTS’s Vladimir Yevtushenkov: Worth $6.7 billion
This billionaire that has reached the number seven position has made a majority of his money via the Russian market. Vladimir Yevtushenkov is the actual controlling owner of the MTS Company, which is a mobile network that is within Russia and nearby countries. In recent years, MTS and Uzekistan government had a bit of a run-in after they were banned from conducting business in this territory. Some of the properties of MTS were also seized during this time period. In retaliation for this action, the government of Russia took control of the daughter of the President of Uzbekistan’s property, which helped to quickly turn the tables.
Unlike any of the others on this list, Yevtushenkov has had a rough ride, especially in 2009, when he lost a total of $8.8 billion from his total net worth of $10 billion. However, even despite this rough patch, he was able to regain his wealth one year later, rising back up to $7.5 billion.
6. Bharti Airtel’s Sunil Mittal and family: Worth $6.8 billion
Bharti Airtel is the biggest telecom network in all of India, where it currently holds a total of 183 million different subscribers. Airtel, which the company is commonly referred to, also offers their services to a total of 19 other countries, and has recently expanded into Africa, which then caused a net profit drop of about 73 percent, mainly attributed to the rising costs. This has led to a direct personal effect to the overall wealth of Sunil Mittal after losing a total of $1 billion in total net value since the year of 2012.
5. Vimpelcom’s Alexei Kuzmichev: Worth $8.2 billion
This is another of the owners of the Alfa group in Russia, which share with Pyotr Aven and Mikhail Fridman. Since the selling of TNK-BP for almost $28 billion in 2012, the personal wealth of Alexei Kuzmichev has increased by $2.5 billion. His wealth has increased the most from 2005, when it was at $1.6 billion, to 2013 when he reached $8.2 billion.
4. Sprint Nextel’s Masayoshi Son: Worth $9.1 billion
Masayoshi Son is the number two wealthiest person in all of Japan and holds 70 percent ownership of Sprint Nextel. While he has been in the industry, it has not been completely smooth due to the FCC being asked by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security to wait for the approval of the offer for the controlling stake in the Sprint Nextel Company until ample checks have been completed. Since the offer he made went in, there has been a 50 percent increase in value, making this short period of time in the telecom industry very successful.
3. Maxis’s Ananda Krishnan: Worth $11.7 billion
Ananda Krishnan is currently the second wealthiest person in all of Malaysia and number three in the list of richest telecom industry giants. The largest asset that he has is the holdings that he has in Maxis, although he is also an important investor in Aircel, which is the Indian telecom giant. Since back in 2005 his wealth has increased from $4 billion up to $11.7 billion.
2. VimpelCom’s Mikhail Fridman: Worth $16.5 billion
The third member of the Alfa Group and the largest shareholder in the telecom company VimpelCom, Fridman holds the number two spot in this richest people list. Since back in 2005 the personal wealth of Fridman has tripled, increasing from $5.6 billion all the way to $16.5 billion. VimpelCom is currently the sixth largest company for mobile telecom in the entire world.
1. America Movil’s Carlos Slim: Worth $68.7 billion
Currently, Carlos Slim Helu is the number one richest person in the entire world, for the fourth year in a row, holding off the infamous Bill Gates of Microsoft. The largest asset for Mr. Slim is his holding in the America Movil company, which is valued to be worth approximately $36.3 billion. Since back in 2005, the wealth of Slim has almost tripled, and has increased from $25.5 billion all the way up to $68.7 billion for 2013.
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