Bezos' wealth stacked in $1 bills would hit ISS space station … 30 times

Study to 'visualise' world's wealthiest people also found Buffett's stack would scale nearly 20,000 Empire State buildings

Bezos' wealth stacked in $1 bills would hit ISS space station … 30 times

A new study design to provide some visual context to just how loaded the top billionaires are has measured their wealth by height as if it were stacked in $1 bills.

Small Business Prices compared this to some of the world’s most iconic buildings and attractions, and the distance between Earth and the Moon. The study also looked at the gender split, as well as which industries and countries account for the most billionaires.

Out of the top 30 billionaires, 80% are male and 20% are female, and together they account for 18.22% of the world’s total billionaire wealth – almost $1.5 trillion. This amount of money equals the average annual salary of 33.6 million people in the US or 52.5 million people in the UK. These are the findings for the world’s five richest people:



$ bills stacked in km

# of Burj Khalifa buildings

# of Eiffel Towers

# of Empire State buildings

# of Mount Everest mountains


Jeff Bezos







Bill Gates







Bernard Arnault & family







Warren Buffett







Larry Ellison






With a total wealth of $413.5 billion, the five richest people in the world are all male and four out of five live in the US, with the exception of Bernard Arnault & family who are situated in France. If you stacked their wealth in $1 bills, it would reach the ISS space station and back 56 times.

Out of all billionaires, 241 (11.50%) are female, accounting for 12.31% of the total wealth of $8 trillion. The research also reveals that only one out of the 10 richest women in the world are self-made billionaires, compared to eight out of the 10 richest men.

The industry split
Across the billionaires analysed, their wealth has derived from a total of 18 different industries. Out of the 30 richest people in the world, 33.3% acquired their wealth from technology and 30% became billionaires from fashion & retail.

Looking at the smallest industries for billionaires, gambling and casinos has the lowest number of billionaires overall. The sports industry also ranks low for both men and women, with construction and engineering as the third smallest industry for female billionaires. The telecom industry is the only sector that doesn’t have billionaires of both genders and accounts for 29 male billionaires, making it the third smallest industry for men.

The country split
The world’s billionaires spread across 72 counties, but where do you have the highest chance of becoming one? Analysing the country of residence, these are the top three countries with the highest number of billionaires:

  • USA: With 614 billionaires, the US accounts for 29.31% of all 2,095 billionaires, as well as 36.67% of all billionaire wealth at more than $2.9 trillion. Eight out of the 10 richest people in the world live here. The USA’s richest person is Jeff Bezos, worth $113 billion at the time of the research, who got his wealth as the CEO of Amazon. He’s also the richest person in the world.
  • China: With a total of 388 billionaires, 18.52% of all billionaires live in China, which accounts for 14.8% of the accumulated wealth. Jack Ma, co-founder of Alibaba, is China’s richest person and the 17th richest person in the world and is worth $38.8 billion
  • Germany: With 107 billionaires, Germany ranks 3rd and accounts for 5.11% of the 2,095
    billionaires as well as 5.6% of the world’s billionaire wealth. Germany’s richest people are Beate Heister and Karl Albrecht Jr. They rank as the 23rd richest in the world and are heirs of Karl Albrecht, who founded Aldi, and are worth $33.3 billion

Ian Wright, founder of Small Business Prices, said in a release: “In today's world, there's an increasingly growing gap between the rich and the poor caused by the global pandemic, with Amazon's stocks skyrocketing in the last quarter, increasing Jeff Bezos' net worth by tens of billions of dollars in a matter of weeks.

“To get a better understanding of just how rich the world's richest are, we wanted to visualise the wealth of the world's billionaires to see how epic the size of their wealth is.”

He added: “It’s interesting that billionaires in the US account for over one-third of all billionaire wealth, with Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft all being founded by Americans, considering the world's billionaires spread across 72 different countries.

“It's also interesting to see that although finance and investments is the biggest industry for billionaires overall, it only accounts for 1 out of the 30 richest people in the world, whilst the technology and fashion and retail industries both account for one-third each, proving these industries to have a massive impact on the overall billionaire wealth.”