Here are America’s Richest Immigrants in 2018

America's Richest Immigrant in 2018
American dream

Forbes recently released its Richest People On The Planet list for 2018. I figured it would be interesting to determine who, among the 575 American billionaires, are immigrants like me. I’ve patiently and painstakingly gone through the list to figure out which ones emigrated from other countries based on the information that I gathered from the web.

If, by any chance, you happen to be a billionaire that I overlooked, feel free to send a blank check so I can make the necessary corrections.

Patrick Soon-Shiong, South Africa,  $7.8 billion

Patrick Soon Shiong

Tenth on my list is South African-born surgeon Patrick Soon-Shiong, 65. He is the son of Chinese immigrant parents who fled to the country during the Japanese occupation in World War II. In 1984, Patrick became an immigrant himself by emigrating to the U.S. to become a board-certified surgeon.

He may look like he’s asking for money in this picture, but don’t be fooled– the poorest guy on my top ten list is easily twice as rich as President Donald Trump. His wealth came from companies he founded to make blockbuster treatments for breast cancer and diabetes.

He is the founder and CEO of NantHealth, which is based in Culver City California.

George Soros, Hungary, $8 billion

George Soros

Ninth is Budapest-born hedge-fund manager George Soros. He was born into a well-off Jewish family, only to end up emigrating to England in 1947 to escape Nazi Germany’s occupation of Hungary.

In 1956, Soros moved to New York City, where he worked as an arbitrage trader. That career enabled him to amass half a million dollars enough to start his first hedge fund.

Had he not transferred 15 of the $23 billion of his net worth towards his philanthropic efforts, last year, he would have been second on the list.

He is well-known as “The Man Who Broke the Bank of England” after shorting $10 billion worth of British Pounds.

Jan Koum, Ukraine, $9.1 billion

Jan Koum

Eighth is a Ukraine-born ex-janitor of a grocery store (which probably explains why he’s wearing a T-shirt in this picture). Jan Koum, 42, is now the CEO and co-founder of WhatsApp, a mobile messaging application. The company was acquired by Facebook in 2014 for $19.3 billion.

He was born in Kyiv (then part of the Soviet Union). He moved with his mother and grandmother to Mountain View, California in 1992, where they were living in government-assisted housing and collecting food stamps.

Koum started working as an infrastructure engineer at Yahoo in 1997 while still attending Computer Science classes but eventually dropped out. He worked there for nine years prior to founding the company.

Micky Arison, Israel, $9.7 billion

Micky Arison

Seventh is the Israeli-born businessman and chairman of Carnival Corporation, Miky Arison, 68.

He was only 5 when his father, Ted, who founded Carnival, decided to move his business to the United States due to a lack of business opportunities.

Micky Arison has been the owner of the Miami Heat basketball team since 1995.

Unlike my home team, the Philadelphia Sixers, the Miami Heat has won three NBA finals. One in 2006 and two consecutive ones in 2012 and 2013.

That’s probably the reason why he is smiling in this picture.

Pierre Omidyar, France, $10.5 billion

Pierre Omidyar

Sixth on the list is the Paris-born son of Iranian immigrant parents who had been sent to France by their parents for college. His father, a urologist, moved to the United States when Omidyar was a child. He later acquired a degree in Computer Science.

He co-founded Ink Development in 1991, a pen-based computing startup that later was rebranded as an e-commerce company and renamed eShop, which was later acquired by Microsoft.

In 1995, he started writing the code for an online venue to enable the listing of a direct person-to-person auction for collectible items. That project later evolved into the popular auction site we know today as eBay.

Rupert Murdoch, Australia, $15 billion

Rupert Murdoch

Fifth is the Melbourne-born media magnate, Rupert Murdoch, 87. His father was a famous war correspondent, and later a regional newspaper magnate owning two popular newspapers.

Murdoch inherited his father’s papers and continued to purchase other media outlets over the years. In the 1970s, he started buying American newspapers. He founded News Corporation, a multi-national mass media empire, in 1979.

In 1985, Murdoch branched out into the entertainment industry with the purchase of 20th Century Fox Film Corporation, which he recently sold much of the stake to the Walt Disney Company. The media empire was later renamed to 21st Century Fox in 2013. He continues to serve as the Executive Chairman.

Elon Musk, South Africa, $19.9 billion

Elon Musk

Fourth is a South African-born serial entrepreneur Elon Musk, 46. Musk taught himself computer programming at the age of 12. He moved to Canada when he was 17, and later to the United States to pursue degrees in physics and economics.

In 1995, he co-founded Zip2, which was sold to Compaq. Musk later founded in 1999, which later became PayPal. He founded two other companies: SpaceX in 2002 and Tesla Motors in 2003. He started three other technology companies in 2015. One of them is Neuralink, which aims to integrate the human brain with artificial intelligence.

Musk is probably the most ambitious among the billionaires on this list– one of his goals is to reduce the “risk of human extinction” by establishing a colony on Mars.

Len Blavatnik, the Soviet Union, $20.2 billion

Len Blavatnik

Third on my list is a Soviet-born British-American investor Len Blavatnik, 60. His family emigrated from the Soviet Union to the United States in 1978. He received a master’s in computer science from Columbia University and an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1989.

He founded Access Industries, an international conglomerate company located in New York in 1986. The company’s diversified portfolio includes investments in industries such as oil, entertainment, coal, aluminum, petrochemicals and plastics, telecommunications, media, and real estate

Blavatnik now lives next to the Kensington Palace in London while maintaining his U.S. citizenship.

Thomas Peterffy, Hungary, $20.3 billion

Thomas Peterffy

Second on the richest list is a Budapest-born digital trading pioneer, Thomas Peterffy, 73.  He came to America in 1965, at age 21, penniless and unable to speak English. He defied the odds to start a career in the United States as an architectural draftsman and later as a computer programmer.

Peterffy purchased a seat on the American Stock Exchange (AMEX) in 1977, where he developed computerized equity trading models. He revolutionized the stock exchange industry by using a hand-held computer to trade equity options.

He is the CEO and founder of Interactive Brokers, a company that markets specialized trading platforms to sophisticated investors.

Sergey Brin, Russia, $47.5 billion

Sergey Brin

Never mind that the Google Glass flopped, Russian-born Sergey Brin, 44, is our richest immigrant on the list. He is more than twice as rich as the number two. He emigrated with his family, at age six, to the United States to escape Jewish persecution.

Brin was a Ph.D. student at Stanford University when he met Larry Page. The two created a search engine, Google, that would sort web pages based on popularity. It has since then become the most popular search engine in the world.

He currently serves as the president of Alphabet, the public holding company that owns Google, Inc. 


The complete list

RankNameCountry of OriginNet Worth (Billions)SourceForbes Rank
1Sergey BrinRussia$47.50Google#13
2Thomas PeterffyHungary$20.30discount brokerage#47
3Len BlavatnikRussia$20.20diversified#48
4Elon MuskSouth Africa$19.90Tesla Motors#54
5Rupert MurdochAustralia$15newspapers, TV network#94
6Pierre OmidyarFrance$10.50eBay#145
7Micky ArisonIsrael$9.70Carnival Cruises#154
8Jan KoumUkraine$9.10WhatsApp#170
9George SorosHungary$8hedge funds#190
10Patrick Soon-ShiongSouth Africa$7.80pharmaceuticals#198
11Sun HongbinChina$7.30real estate#211
12Shahid KhanPakistan$7.20auto parts#217
13David SunTaiwan$5.70computer hardware#315
14John TuChina$5.70computer hardware#315
15Jen-Hsun HuangTaiwan$5.60semiconductors#321
16Dagmar DolbyGermany$4Dolby Laboratories#550
17Min KaoTaiwan$3.40navigation equipment#679
18Rakesh GangwalIndia$3.30airline#703
19Andrew & Peggy CherngChina$3.20restaurants#729
20Haim SabanIsrael$3.20TV network, investments#729
21John CatsimatidisGreece$3.10oil, real estate#766
22Do Won & Jin Sook ChangSouth Korea$3.10fashion retail#766
23Romesh T. WadhwaniIndia$3.10software#766
24Valentin GapontsevRussia$3lasers#791
25Kieu HoangVietnam$2.80medical products#859
26Vinod KhoslaIndia$2.30venture capital#1070
27Kavitark Ram ShriramIndia$2.10venture capital, Google#1157
28Brian ShethIndia$2investments#1215
29Nicolas BerggruenFrance$1.80investments#1339
30John KapoorIndia$1.80healthcare#1339
31Aneel BhusriIndia$1.60business software#1477
32Thai LeeThailand$1.60IT provider#1477
33Niraj ShahIndia$1.60online retail#1477
34Eren OzmenTurkey$1.50aerospace#1561
35Fatih OzmenTurkey$1.50aerospace#1561
36Fayez SarofimEgypt$1.50money management#1561
37Victor FungHong Kong$1.40trading company#1650
38Evgeny (Eugene) ShvidlerRussia$1.40oil & gas, investments#1650
39Alexander RovtUkraine$1.30fertilizer, real estate#1756
40Jayshree UllalUnited Kingdom$1.30technology#1756
41Bharat DesaiKenya$1.10IT Consulting#1999
42Isaac LarianIran$1.10toys#1999
43Andrea Reimann-CiardelliGermany$1.10consumer goods#1999

Hi Thanks For Share Such kind of nice information about billionaires i would like to share your article and i also written about Top 10 richest men in the world , you can also read more about this. and again Thanks for share your content with us.very helpful.


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