Imagine you have $1,000,000. That’s a significant sum of money, even today. Now multiply it by two. Multiply it by two. Multiply it by two. And… okay, multiply it by two a total of eight times. Now you’ve got a billion dollars. Although the world would probably be a best place if billionaires didn’t exist, the truth is they do. If you wanted to join their club, how would you go about it?
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What is the Probability that You will Become a Billionaire?
At the end of 2021, there were 2,755 famous billionaires in the world, and the world population is around 8 billion. If you were to write the name of every human being on a piece of paper and put them all in a sack, the probability of randomly guessing the name of a billionaire would be about 1/2,867,514.
However, if you limit the sample to just North America and Europe, your chances improve significantly. Just about half of the world’s billionaires come from these two regions, even though they represent just under 10% of the world’s population. Just by being born on the perfect continents, the probability of being a billionaire increases to 1/505,780.
However, unless you were born into a family that owns a mega-company or is part of royalty, your options are to make your own fortune.
How do you Become a Billionaire?
Well, for starters, you have to have more than $1 billion.
With the exception of royalty and dictators, most of the world’s billionaires achieved their status by founding and managing successful companies.
It’s important to remember that most billionaires have not risen from poverty to wealth. In fact, we almost always find that they have moved from wealth to greater wealth. Like many actors and musicians, most of the most successful business leaders come from wealthy families, which provides them with a financial safety net to take the risks that come with starting a business or embarking on an artistic career.
This means that, if you don’t have a good financial cushion, your chances of becoming a billionaire just took a serious hit.
The World’s Billionaires
By definition, billionaires are above average. But what does the average billionaire look like? The average billionaire is a 63-year-old white male who lives in New York and has a fortune of $3.1 billion. About 5% of that wealth is in real estate and other luxury assets. About one-fifth of his fortune is in cash. The rest is in shares of public and private companies.
How many Billionaires are there in the United States?
The United States has 724 citizens in the exclusive nine-zero club. Among them is the richest man in the world: Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, still holds a whopping $177 billion fortune despite his recent divorce.