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Top 5 richest tech founders lost $378 billion in 2022.

Published: 2023-01-06

In a Forbes column dedicated to the richest people on the planet, a note was published in which the proverb “easy came, easy went” was clearly illustrated. In 2022 alone, the fortunes of the five richest people in the world in the field of high technologies in total decreased by $ 378 billion, while years earlier this figure was rushing up at no less short notice.

The anti-leader of the process was Elon Musk, who became the first person on Earth who lost more than $ 200 billion of his personal fortune. But he wasn't the only one in 2022 whose wealth fell by a historically significant amount.

The first person to make a personal fortune of $100 billion was Bill Gates, which happened in 1999, at the height of the dot-com bubble. The record held until 2017, when Amazon founder Jeff Bezos surpassed Gates's record, and three years later, he completely overcame a new mark of $ 200 billion in personal funds that no one had previously taken. But a year later, at the end of 2021, ten people entered the club of billionaires with a fortune of $100+ billion. And all of them, interestingly, were not richer than Elon Musk, who by that time had a personal fortune of $ 272 billion.

In second place after Musk was the owner of the French luxury goods manufacturer LVMH (LVMH Moet Hennessy - Louis Vuitton) Bernard Arnault, who owned $ 200 billion by the end of 2021. Today, the Frenchman leads the club of $ 100+ billionaires of seven people. Musk left this makeshift club after losing over $100 billion in a single calendar year, also a record. In this, he was "helped" by a 65% decrease in the value of Tesla's shares over the year and the purchase of Twitter. Musk is now worth an estimated $137 billion, down $183 billion from his $320 billion peak in November 2021.

In addition to Elon Musk, four other billionaires saw record fortune losses in 2022, which happened against the backdrop of falling technology stocks. Jeff Bezos lost $85 billion in a year due to a 50% decline in the value of Amazon shares. A 64% drop in Mark Zuckenberg's Meta shares resulted in the loss of $77 billion in his personal fortune. The fortunes of Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin each fell $45 billion, which happened along with a 39% drop in Alphabet shares.

In the recent past, these entrepreneurs accounted for five of the ten biggest calendar-year wealth gains in history: Musk's fortune jumped $129 billion in 2020 and $116 billion in 2021, Bezos' fortune rose $75 billion in 2020, and Page and Brin's fortunes increased by $46 billion and $44 billion, respectively, in 2021. As it came, so it went, - sums up the author of the note on the Forbes website.