These 6 South Africans lost R74 billion in 2015

Forbes has released it billionaires list for 2016, which includes six familiar South African names in its ranks – all of whom lost a lot of money in 2015.

The past 12 months have been tough on South Africa’s wealthiest people. The group of six saw their collective net worth of $26.5 billion in 2015, dwindle by 18% in 2016 to $21.8 billion.

Hardest hit is minerals boss, Patrice Motsepe, who saw his wealth effectively halved over the past year.

According to Forbes, diamond magnate Nicky Oppenheimer has once again taken the crown as South Africa’s richest man, replacing retail tycoon Christo Wiese, who enjoyed the top spot for most of last year.

Johann Rupert slipped to third with a an estimated net worth of $5.3 billion, below Wiese’s $5.8 billion.

Oppenheimer is the only South African in the top 200, ranked 174th, overall, with Wiese and Rupert ranked within the top 250, at 214th and 248th, respectively.

Three other South Africans are classified as dollar billionaires, but not among the top 1,000. Allan Gray is estimated to be worth $1.6 billion (1121st overall), followed by Naspers chairman Koos Bekker at $1.4 billion (1275th) and minerals boss Patrice Motsepe at $1.1 billion (1577th).

Aspen Pharmaceuticals head, Stephen Saad, who was ranked among the billionaires in 2015 lost his super-rich status, falling off the list in 2016, according to Forbes.

Here is how South Africa’s billionaires’ fortunes have changed over the past 12 months.

South African billionaires

# Change from 2015 Person Net worth (US$) 2015 Net worth (US$) 2016 Change (%)
174 +21 Nicky Oppenheimer $6.7 billion $6.6 billion -1.5%
214 +11 Christo Wiese $6.3 billion $5.8 billion -7.9%
248 -69 Johann Rupert $7.4 billion $5.3 billion -28.4%
1121 +105 Allan Gray $1.6 billion $1.6 billion 0.0%
1275 -465 Koos Bekker $2.3 billion $1.4 billion -39.1%
1577 -730 Patrice Motsepe $2.2 billion $1.1 billion -50.0%
Total $26.5 billion $21.8 billion -17.7%

Global billionaires

South Africa’s super-rich were not alone in 2015. According to Forbes, global billionaires’ aggregate net worth was $6.48 trillion, $570 billion less than last year.

It was also the first time since 2010 that the average net worth of a billionaire dropped – it is now $3.6 billion, $300 million less than last year.

As many as 221 people fell off the list, while 198 newcomers joined the ranks – and of those who made it into the new year as a billionaire, 892 are poorer while only 501 added to their fortunes.

Globally, the world rich list remained virtually unchanged, with the top 10 dominated by those individuals who have been there for the better part of a decade.

Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates remains the world’s richest man with an estimated net worth of $75 billion. He is followed by Amancio Ortega at $67 billion and investor, Warren Buffett at $60.8 billion.

Here are the world’s 10 richest people

# Person Source of wealth Net worth (US$)
1 Bill Gates Microsoft $75.0 billion
2 Amancio Ortega Zara $67.0 billion
3 Warren Buffett Berkshire Hathaway $60.8 billion
4 Carlos Slim Helu American Movil $50.0 billion
5 Jeff Bezos Amazon.com $45.2 billion
6 Mark Zuckerberg Facebook $44.6 billion
7 Larry Ellison Oracle $43.6 billion
8 Michael Bloomberg Bloomberg $40.0 billion
9 Charles Koch Diversified $39.6 billion
9 David Koch Diversified $39.6 billion

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These 6 South Africans lost R74 billion in 2015