Mumbai Surpasses Beijing as Asian Billionaire Hub

Feature and Cover Mumbai Surpasses Beijing as Asian Billionaire Hub

Mumbai has emerged as the premier Asian destination for billionaires, surpassing Beijing, as indicated by the latest findings from the Hurun Research Institute’s global rich list. This represents a significant milestone as it marks the first instance of India’s most populous city claiming the top spot in Asia.

The 2024 global rich list for cities, spearheaded by New York with 119 billionaires, followed closely by London with 97, reveals Mumbai, India’s financial powerhouse, securing the lead in Asia with 92 billionaires, as per Hurun’s data. Beijing follows closely with 91 billionaires, trailed by Shanghai with 87.

Globally, the number of billionaires has risen to 3,279, showcasing a 5% increase from the previous year, as highlighted in the report. Despite China experiencing a decline of 155 billionaires, totaling 814, it still retains its position at the helm of the country ranking. The United States trails with 800 billionaires, while India holds third place with 271.

The research firm noted, “China had a bad year,” attributing this downturn to significant shifts in wealth dynamics, particularly in real estate and renewable energy sectors. Zhong Shanshan, the founder of Nongfu Spring, maintains his status as China’s wealthiest individual, while Colin Huang of Pinduoduo has surpassed Tencent’s Ma Huateng to claim the second spot.

In comparison, the United States, bolstered by the addition of 109 billionaires in 2023, now lags behind China by a mere 14 billionaires, according to Hurun. The proliferation of artificial intelligence has been a key factor driving the surge in wealth, particularly evident in the tech sector.

The report highlights, “Whilst Jensen Huang has grabbed many of the headlines as Nvidia broke through the $2 trillion mark, catapulting him into the Hurun Top 30 as a result, the billionaires behind Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Oracle and Meta have seen significant surges in their wealth as investors bet on the value generated by AI.”

Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Tesla’s Elon Musk top the charts in the U.S., boasting net worths of $201 billion and $190 billion respectively, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaires index. Additionally, Taylor Swift makes her debut on Hurun Research’s list with a net worth of $1.2 billion, driven largely by royalties and her successful Eras Tour.

India has also witnessed a surge in its ultra-rich populace, adding 84 new members to its ranks, the second largest increase after the United States. With a GDP growth rate of 8.4% in the October-December period, India has solidified its position as the world’s fastest-growing economy. December saw India’s stock market surpassing Hong Kong’s to become the seventh largest globally, valued at over $4 trillion according to Refinitiv.

Mukesh Ambani, Chairman of Reliance Industries, retains his status as Asia’s wealthiest individual and the eleventh richest globally, boasting a net worth of $110 billion, according to Bloomberg. Despite briefly surpassing Ambani in January, Gautam Adani, founder of the Adani Group, now trails three spots behind with a net worth of $97.9 billion, according to Bloomberg’s data.

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