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The AI boom has proven lucrative for tech founders and investors alike in 2023, adding billions of dollars to the fortunes of the already affluent Big Tech executives. The rise of generative AI technology, including Large Language models, vision models amongst others have attracted significant interest from investors who seek to capitalize on its potential.
Major technology giants such as Meta Platforms and Nvidia have experienced substantial gains in their stock prices due to the AI boom. Companies like Microsoft, Google’s parent company Alphabet, and Oracle have also witnessed significant surges.
As a result of these developments, the founders of these tech companies, who were already among the wealthiest individuals in the world at the beginning of 2023, have seen their fortunes further increase.
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Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Meta Platforms, has benefited greatly from the rise of AI and his cost-cutting measures referred to as the “year of efficiency.” Meta shares have rallied by 134% year-to-date, contributing to a wealth increase of over $57 billion for Zuckerberg, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Zuckerberg’s focus on efficiency and prioritizing AI within the company has contributed to this growth.
Oracle’s co-founder and former CEO Larry Ellison surpassed Bill Gates on the rich list for the first time ever. Oracle’s plans for accelerating AI deployment have propelled its stock price. This resulted into Ellison’s personal fortune rising by $47 billion in 2023 due to a 55% gain in Oracle’s stock.
Bill Gates himself has gained $24 billion in wealth this year, primarily driven by the appreciation of his Microsoft shares. Microsoft has emerged as a preferred AI investment for billionaires like Stanley Druckenmiller. Bill Gates also experienced a $2 billion boost to his wealth after an AI-themed earnings call in April, which drove the company’s share price upward.
Jensen Huang, the founder of Nvidia, has also experienced a significant increase in personal fortune. With Nvidia’s shares surging by 198% and the company achieving a market capitalisation of $1 trillion, Huang’s wealth has grown by $24 billion.
Overall, the combined wealth of the rich list members has surged by over $150 billion in 2023, largely attributed to the AI boom.