Alibaba founder and executive chairman Jack Ma was the biggest financial winner of 2014, according to a new report from research firm Wealth-X.
Ma’s net worth rose by $US18.5 billion this year, eventually reaching $US29.2 billion in December 2014. It was an increase of 173%, the biggest wealth increase of anyone else in the world.
Ma’s good fortune was helped by Alibaba’s September IPO, the biggest public debut in the history of the New York Stock Exchange. He became the richest person in China after the stock continued to perform well in the following months.
Warren Buffett came in second on the Wealth-X list, adding $US13.5 billion to his fortune in 2014.
Bill Gates was third, making $US10.5 billion and increasing his total net worth to $US83.1 billion this year. It was a year-to-year increase of 10.5%.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg earned the fourth spot on the list, increasing his net worth by $US8.4 billion to reach $US33.1 billion in December 2014. It was a gain of 8.4% over his December 2013 net worth of $US24.7 billion.
Swiss telecom billionaire Patrick Drahi rounded out the top five, with an increase of $US5.1 billion.