Not every billionaire success story is written in a billionaire’s home. Throughout the centuries there have been people who have been fuelled by nothing but grit hard work and the burning desire to achieve. Sprinkle a little luck on this, and as a result, you’ll probably get yourself one of the world’s richest persons! These stories are living proof that if you’re willing to take risk and grab the right opportunity at the right time, you’ll see yourself on the cover of Forbes.
1. SIR RICHARD BRANSON – NET WORTH: 5.2 BILLION USD
Sir Richard Branson is one of Britain’s most talked-about billionaire success story. For those of you who don’t know him, he owns a conglomerate of businesses under the “Virgin Brand”. Some of his most popular products & services go by the name of Virgin Media, Virgin Mobile and certainly Virgin Galactic.
But his humble beginnings make the journey look almost impossible. Starting off his own magazine at the age of 16, Branson showed the tendency to take risks and starting a business. He set-up a mail order record business in 1970 by the name of Virgin Records and by the 80s was expanding his empire with full pace. Spread on almost every continent, Branson’s companies are thriving day by day.
2. LARRY ELLISON – NET WORTH: 51.9 BILLION USD
An American entrepreneur who is easily one of the world’s richest persons, Joseph Larry Ellison is the co-founder of the world-famous Oracle Corporation. The company is famous for its database that goes by the same name and is a global leader in the field.
Born in New York but brought up in Chicago, Larry grew up an orphan as his mother gave him away, not meeting her until he was 48! His adopted father lost all his fortune during the Great Depression. The string of difficulties continued to haunt Larry until he attended the University of Chicago and developed an interest in computing!
3. MOHED ALTRAD – NET WORTH: 1.59 BILLION USD
This is a truly touching billionaire success stories that shows the power of devotion. Mohed Altrad is a Syrian-born Billionaire who moved to France with the goal to succeed and escape the primitive, nomadic lifestyle.
His mother died when Mohed was young and he was raised by his grandmother. Finding it difficult to adjust into such a closed-minded society, Mohed moved to France, famously living off only one meal a day. His fortunes turned however as he bought a failing scaffolding company, transforming it into the all-powerful Altrad Group.
4. OPRAH WINFREY- NET WORTH: 2.9 BILLION USD
A woman who needs no introduction, Oprah Winfrey belongs to a poor family in Mississippi but had her fate turned upside down when she won a scholarship from the Tennessee State University.
At a time when racial tensions were running high, Oprah became the first African American TV correspondent, that too at age 19.
In 1983, she moved to Chicago and started hosting a talk-show, which would later on become “The Oprah Winfrey Show”.
Today, she’s an established host, author, producer and philanthropist.
5. HOWARD SCHULTZ – NET WORTH: 2.9 BILLION USD
For a man who grew up in a housing complex for the poor, being mentally healthy is a feat on its own. For Howard Schultz, however, the sky was the limit. Born in Brooklyn, Schultz always had the urge to do something that would help him escape the substandard lifestyle he resided in.
After getting a scholarship from the University of Northern Michigan, Schultz landed at a random coffee shop called Starbucks. He grew this company to more than 16,000 outlets and is a billionaire who deserves every bit of praise he gets.
6. ROMAN ABRAMOVICH – NET WORTH: 8.4 BILLION USD
A Russian billionaire success story. It doesn’t get any classier than this. Roman Abramovich was an orphan who grew up in Southern Russia in extreme poverty. Being raised by someone else and in a subarctic region, made him tough physically & mentally.
He started off with a small company producing plastic toys but eventually ventured into the oil business, and quickly made a name for himself.
Today he enjoys watching Chelsea Football Club (acquired in 2003), has the world’s largest yacht and a lifestyle only Kings can imagine.
7. SIR PHILIP GREEN – NET WORTH: 4.7 BILLION USD
Often viewed negatively in his own country, with comparisons being made to Donald Trump, Sir Philip Green may not be the nicest person on the planet but he is a poor billionaire nonetheless.
Born in England, Sir Philip Green left school at 15 and kicked off a retail career, selling jeans to retailers. He formed the Arcadia Group eventually shooting him into stardom and billionaire status.
Today he is surrounded by a string of controversies but his hard work, devotion and humble beginnings are commendable.