Sweden's richest man controls IKEA, the world's largest furniture retailer, through a series of trusts and foundations. The company generated more than $33 billion in revenue and about $4 billion in net income in 2011. Ikano Group, his family's investment vehicle, manages four IKEA franchises, a credit card business and real estate investments.
For 60 years, the name of Berthold Beitz has been synonymous with Germany’s biggest steelmaker, ThyssenKrupp AG, at first for his role in rebuilding the former arms supplier and helping it break with its Nazi past.
Bloomberg Markets’ inaugural list of the world’s richest people showcases the billionaires who pull the levers on the global economy. Their net worth totals $2.7 trillion, about the size of the gross domestic product of France, the fifth-biggest economy on the planet.
The IKEA retail empire Ingvar Kamprad started almost 70 years ago has amassed a fortune that Bloomberg values at more than $40 billion and makes him the richest man in Europe, and one of the world’s five wealthiest men.
Ikea Group, the world’s biggest home-furnishings retailer, plans to increase the number of outlets fourfold in China as the world’s most populous nation is set to become the company’s second-largest market.