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No. of self-made billionaires rises in major economies, including S. Korea
Updated: 2021-09-13 17:04:19 KST
The number of self-made billionaires in some major economies including South Korea continues to rise compared to those with wealth that is inherited.
A report by corporate research firm Leaders Index gathered data from each of the top 50 wealthiest people in South Korea, the U.S. and Japan.
Among the 1-hundred-50 richest, 98 were self-made billionaires, six more than in 2018.
South Korea in particular saw the biggest increase in that number, with half of the top 50 being self-made.
Though Japan saw a drop in the number of self-made billionaires, it still accounted for more than 70 percent of the list.
All three countries saw more than ten self-made newcomers from three years ago.
South Korea saw the most, with 14.
This is contrary to its traditional family-based "chaebol" social phenomenon, but one expert says it's still too early to determine what this change really means.


"What's more important is whether this trend can continue but such a trend is relatively new. So right now, it's too early to conclude whether South Korean society is moving toward a more even playing field for everyone. But one thing's for sure, this will create a social atmosphere that could encourage many startups to feel like they can do it too."

The average age of self-made billionaires dropped in all three countries, with South Korea seeing the largest drop from 61.5 to 56.3 years old.
And despite COVID-19, the wealth of the wealthiest grew further.
The combined wealth of the 1-hundred-50 richest grew from 1.5 trillion in 2018 to 2.5 trillion U.S. dollars. up 68 percent.
Those who made their own money saw almost an 80-percent growth while those with inherited wealth saw a 45 percent growth in wealth.
Kim Sung-min, Arirang News.
Reporter : smkim@arirang.com