Who is the richest person in the world?
In March 2020, Forbes released its annual billionaires list, which ranks the richest people on Earth by net worth. The death of a major political donor was a key factor in changing this year's list.
Here are the richest people on the planet, as of spring 2020.
20. Ma Huateng (China)
Chairman of Tencent Holdings
Net worth: $38.1 billion
You may not know this name (or his nickname, Pony Ma), but in China, Ma's company is an everyday communications staple. Tencent's social messaging app, WeChat, has more than 1 billion users.
BUMPED: Mukesh Ambani (India)
The chairman of Reliance Industries, one of India's most valuable companies, dropped off the top 20 in 2020. Per Forbes, his net worth has dropped from $50 billion to $36.8 billion.
(Tie) 18. Julia Koch & family (U.S.)
Stakeholder, Koch Industries
Net worth: $38.2 billion
Julia Koch, a former assistant to fashion designer Adolfo, is the widow of David Koch, whose family conglomerate is the second-largest privately held company in the United States.
A death changes the rankings
Last year, David Koch, co-majority shareholder of his family conglomerate, was on this list at No. 11. His net worth at the time: Net worth: $50.5 billion.
He passed away on August 23, 2019, at age 79.
(Tie) 18. Charles Koch (U.S.)
CEO, Koch Industries
Net worth: $38.2 billion
17. Jack Ma (China)
Co-founder, Alibaba Group
Net worth: $38.8 billion
End of a 20-year run
On Sept. 10, 2019, Ma stepped down as chairman of Alibaba. Through his e-commerce company, the former English teacher is credited with leaving a profound impact on the Chinese economy.
16. Michael Bloomberg (U.S.)
Co-founder, Bloomberg L.P.
Net worth: $48 billion
In 2020, the former New York mayor poured roughly $1 billion into a bid for the Democratic presidential nomination, including $275 million on anti-Trump advertising. He quit in March 2020, endorsing frontrunner Joe Biden and transferring his remaining campaign cash to the Democratic party.
15. Francoise Bettencourt Meyers & family (France)
Chairwoman of family's L'Oréal holdings and granddaughter of L'Oréal's founder
Net worth: $48.9 billion
One of the world's richest women
One of the richest women in the world, Bettencourt Meyers, together with her family owns 33% of the cosmetics company L'Oreal. In 2019, the juggernaut logged its best sales growth in more than a decade.
14. Sergey Brin (U.S.)
Controlling shareholder, Alphabet Inc.
Net worth: $49.1 billion
Alphabet is the parent company of Google. In 2019, Brin retired as president of Alphabet, but he remains a board member and employee. Born in Russia, Brin became a U.S. citizen as a child, in 1979.
13. Larry Page (U.S.)
Controlling shareholder, Alphabet
Net worth: $49.1 billion
No more "daily nagging"
Like his co-founder, Page also stepped down as a day-to-day Alphabet executive — in his case, CEO — in 2019.
In explaining their decision, the pair wrote a joint letter saying, "Today, in 2019, if the company was a person, it would be a young adult of 21 and it would be time to leave the roost ... we believe it's time to assume the role of proud parents - offering advice and love, but not daily nagging!"
12. Carlos Slim Helu & family (Mexico)
Honorary chairman, América Móvil
Net worth: $52.1 billion
Keeping trains running
Slim Helu's latest investment involves not telecommunication, but transportation. He and Mexico's government are collaborating on a railroad line in the country's southeastern region.
11. Steve Ballmer (U.S.)
Former CEO of Microsoft; current owner of the Los Angeles Clippers
Net worth: $52.7 billion
Rooting for the Clippers
Once known as Microsoft's 30th employee, Ballmer ran the company from 2000 to 2014. He now spends most of his time minding his Los Angeles-based basketball team.
10. Rob Walton (U.S.)
Net worth: $54.1 billion
Scion of Walmart
Rob Walton is the oldest son of Sam, the founder of Walmart.
9. Alice Walton (U.S.)
Net worth: $54.4 billion
8. Jim Walton (U.S.)
Walmart heir; chairman and CEO, Arvest Bank Group, Inc.
Net worth: $54.6 billion
Giving away a billion
Seen here with siblings Rob (L) and Alice, Jim Walton gave away $1.2 billion worth of his Walmart stock in 2019. He reportedly gave it to several charities, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
7. Mark Zuckerberg (U.S.)
Co-founder and CEO, Facebook
Net worth: $54.7 billion
The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the philanthropy that the Facebook founder runs with wife Priscilla Chan, has gotten involved in the COVID-19 pandemic. The foundation recently announced a $13.6 million program to study the virus's spread in Northern California. Another $5 million has been earmarked for distance learning and other education-related needs stemming from the coronavirus lockdown.
6. Amancio Ortega (Spain)
Net worth: $55.1 billion
Ortega learned to sew shirts by hand before launching his own fast-fashion business with first wife Rosalía Mera.
5. Larry Ellison (U.S.)
Net worth: $59 billion
In February 2020, Ellison's Porcupine Creek estate, near Palm Springs, California, hosted a fundraiser for Donald Trump's 2020 presidential campaign.
4. Warren Buffett (U.S.)
CEO, Berkshire Hathaway
Net worth: $67.5 billion
Funding renewable energy
In May 2020, a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary landed permission to build one of the biggest solar energy installations on Earth. When it's completed, the $1 billion Gemini Solar Project, near Las Vegas, will be the world's eighth-largest solar-power complex.
3. Bernard Arnault & family (France)
Chairman and CEO, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton
Net worth: $76 billion
2. Bill Gates (U.S.)
Net worth: $98 billion
1. Jeff Bezos (U.S.)
Net worth: $113 billion
Divorce creates new billionaire
Bezos divorced wife MacKenzie in 2019. As part of their split settlement, Bezos ceded one-quarter of his Amazon stake, 4% of the whole company. The exchange landed MacKenzie Bezos, 50, on the Forbes billionaires list for 2020, at No. 22.
Her net worth: $36 billion.