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Billionaires who not only made a fortune, but also became symbols of their countries
Billionaires who not only made a fortune, but also became symbols of their countries

The lists of the richest people on the planet include billionaires who are well known in their country. And a little less people, whom the whole world knows. But some businessmen became famous not so much for their wealth as for scandals and intrigues, incredible ambitions and exciting stories. It is these selection criteria, which clearly characterize the national traditions of their countries, and became the basis for the selection of billionaire symbols of the regions where they live.


Liliane Bettencourt

How would you characterize a typical representative of French society? Refined, passionate, loving and prone to secret intrigues. One of the richest ladies in Europe, Liliane Bettencourt, was able to embody all these features in her work. From the age of 15, she worked in the beauty industry - in a company owned by her father. After his death in 1957, she became the sole heiress and headed the L'Oreal company.

Her husband André Bettencourt held a ministerial position and later went to work in the family business. His political connections did not disappear, and even paid dividends. The journalists became the owners of an audio recording provided by Bettencourt's former butler. This evidence nearly deprived Prime Minister Nicolas Sarkozy of the presidency. On them, the Minister of the Budget Eric Werth asked the business woman to find a job for his wife. But the whole piquancy of the story was that Werth at that time was the head of a company aimed at identifying companies that evade taxes.

Betancourt just received a tax rebate of € 30 million. But that is not all. Soon, another portion of compromising evidence was obtained from her accountant. The lady claimed that during the presidential election campaign, the same Vert, who headed the Union for a Popular Movement, was given an envelope with 150 thousand euros in cash. However, after lengthy proceedings, the investigation was closed.

Another funny story that happened to this lady cannot go unnoticed. As an 80-year-old Madame, Madame Bettencourt was embroiled in a spicy scandal. According to her daughter, the elderly billionaire gave her 60-year-old friend François-Marie Banier $ 1.4 billion in cash and gifts. Here were the policies for medical services, as well as paintings by Picasso, Matisse and other famous artists. Doctors found signs of Alzheimer's disease in the lady, and, as you know, in addition to memory loss and dementia, she causes increased sexual desire. Here is such a nimble French billionaire!


Aliko Dangote

Aliko Dangote is one of the richest people on the continent. He believes that doing business is like a war, that friends should be politicians, and good should be done only occasionally. Perhaps that is why the successful activity of his Dangote Group covers 14 African countries and employs more than 20 thousand people. It all began thirty years ago, when an ambitious Nigerian made an unexpected bet on a cement mining company. The calculation was simple - just at this time began a period of rapid construction of roads and housing.

The next thing that the entrepreneur undertook is the food market. He rightly judged that population growth and a decrease in land areas will invariably lead to an increase in food prices.In the biography of a businessman, there is also a place for connections with the government elite. Aliko Dangote is sometimes called the man who "privatized the government." He sponsored the ruling party of Nigeria and the 2003 election campaign of former military man Olusegun Obasanjo. However, it cannot be denied that Dangote is also a well-known philanthropist. He allocates significant funds for medical and educational projects.


Giorgio Armani

This country is the birthplace of a considerable number of world famous brands. But out of all this diversity, we chose a person who is on the 127th position in the Forbes world ranking. The life of 86-year-old Giorgio Armani is like an Italian fairy tale. In his youth, he managed to be both an assistant to a photographer and a military man, and studied for two years as a doctor at the University of Milan, until he found a job as an assistant in a large department store. In a short time, he was able to successfully climb the career ladder, and in 1974 for the first time presented a collection of clothes under his own name.

His business is advanced management and marketing techniques. For example, for the first time he proposed to split the companies producing fashionable clothes and accessories, creating Armani Prive, Armani Jeans, Armani Casa, Armani Junior … Also, the forward-thinking entrepreneur pays special attention to the image of his companies. His PR policy is always verified to the smallest detail, there are no casual faces and unnecessary words in it. Advertising of the products of this brand is always a great success for sports and cinema stars, because this means not only an excellent reward, but also the consolidation of professional success. And the last - like any Italian man, Giorgio does not look at his age. Sports, proper nutrition and an attentive attitude to one's own person are the secret of the Italian handsome man. It's a pity that women are only interested in him as models.


Robin Lee

Millions of Chinese boys would like to repeat the success of their compatriot. However, the life story of Robin Lee may well teach them this. The future billionaire was born into a large family. He successfully graduated from Peking University, and then, at the invitation of Dow Jones, came to work in the United States. He put his experience at a high-tech company into practice by creating the search engine Baidu. He found investors in the US, and then, returning to China, he "hyped" the product. In addition to the incredible ability to work and the support of the Chinese government, the Internet boom in the Middle Kingdom itself contributed to the success.

However, Li, as a true son of his country, did not hesitate to earn money with a little crafty methods. So, there were times when his search engine gave out links to pirate sites where you could find mp3 files. Another way to make money is placing advertising links like two peas in a pod similar to non-advertising ones. Also, the search engine Baidu introduced another innovation - it took money not only for advertising goods and services, but also for hiding it.

For example, against the backdrop of a melamine scandal (milk from some manufacturers contained a substance that provokes cancer), this search engine was engaged in removing links to incriminating references to certain companies. And in 2010, Baidu took 80% of the Chinese market at all, because unlike the same Google did not contradict the authorities. The American search engine did not want to engage in censorship checking the letters of its user and was forced to leave the market. So hard work, talent and a little protectionism - and here's a purely Chinese formula for a successful billionaire.

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