Forbes' annual list of “The World's Billionaires” was released this week, and (gasp) a Mexican, Carlos Slim Helu, took the top spot for the second time in a row.
The U.S. grip on the billionaire game, and California's too, has been slipping even as the ultra-rich got even richer during this economic bad trip. The number of billionaires (1,210) and their combined worth ($4.5 trillion) are both record-breakers (hmm).
It's still boggling to see how many of the ultra-rich live in Southern California (including Orange County and San Diego), at least part time. And California …
… well, if California were a nation, it would rank fourth, behind the U.S., China and Russia, in billionaire population (a lucky 88).
What's always seemed strange to us is how many rich people call Southern California home, and yet how little buzz we get for it. Sure, Hollywood gets plenty of attention (but see how few of the folks below are from the industry).
Why do places like Dubai and Shanghai (not to mention Monaco) get more attention for their wealth? Why to skyscrapers seem to rise incessantly every where else than where the most rich people in the world's richest nation live?
The region has enough billionaires to nearly put us in the top 10 if we were a country.
Here are the 20 SoCal rich guys and girls we spotted on the list (and let us know if we missed someone or got it wrong via the comments section below):
1, O.C. land developer Donald Bren was tops for the region, with a net worth pegged at $12 billion.
2. L.A. arts patron and former developer Eli Broad: $5.8 billion.
3. Biotech mogul Patrick Soon-Shiong: $5.2 billion.
4. Entertainment industry honcho David Geffen: $5.1 billion.
5. Viacom's Sumner Redstone: $3.8 billion.
6. Casino magnate Kirk Kerkorian: $3.5 billion.
7. TV guy and pro-Israel force Haim Saban: $3.4 billion.
8. Dole and real estate man David Murdock: $3 billionl.
9. Movie giant Steven Spielberg: $3 billion.
10. Private jet entrepreneur Steven Udvar-Hazy: $2.8 billion.
11. Private equity money man Tom Gores: $2.4 billion.
12. Univision beneficiary A. Jerrold Perenchio: $2.2 billion.
13. Forever 21 clothiers Jin Sook and Do Won Chang: $2.2 billion.
14. Investor Michael Milken: $2.1 billion.
15. Real estate developer and “Los Angeles Stadium” hopeful Ed Roski: $2.1 billion.
16. Land man Alan Casden: $1.9 billion.
17. Broadcom tycoon Henry Nicholas: $1.8 billion.
18. San Diego Qualcomm guy Irwin Jacobs: $1.6 billion.
19. Public Storage businesswoman Tamara Gustavson: $1.1 billion.
20. Berkshire Hathaway investor Charles Munger: $1 billion.