After news that the number of Florida Ultra High Net Worth Individuals has risen 12% in 2014 to place it fifth nationally, comes a report showing it also has the fourth highest number of billionaires.
The news specialist Forbes estimates the United States has around 500 billionaires, although it is not publishing details about the breakdown until later in 2015. Using 2013 figures, the Motley Fool website, says 37 billionaires live in Florida. Around seven out of 10 of the billionaires have built up their wealth from various sectors, including real estate, and the rest inherited it.
The fact that Florida has no income tax, attracts people to the Sunshine State, along with its sunny weather and low cost of living. Garrett Kenny, CEO of leading Florida developer and agent, the Feltrim Group says, “Florida is one of the most popular places to live in the United States, so it inevitable attracts wealthy investors from around the world, but you don’t have to be billionaires to buy top-quality real estate.
“There are still excellent apartments and villas available in Florida from around $100,000, so you can have an enviable lifestyle and enjoy the area’s world-class amenities, attractions, theme parks, shops and glorious weather, without having to fork out a fortune.”
The state claims 37 billionaires, some of whom are home-grown, but many of whom have decided to make Florida their home after making their money elsewhere.
Prominent Florida billionaires include venture capitalist Wilbur Ross, hedge fund investor, Eddie Lampert; Carnival Chairman Micky Arison, Best Buy founder, Richard Schulze; Rockstar energy-drink founder Russ Weiner, Subway founder Fred DeLuca and Wayne Huizenga, founder of Blockbuster Video and Waste Management.
California has the most billionaires at 111, including Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and WhatsApp co-founders Jan Koum and Brian Acton.
New York has the second-highest number of billionaires at 88, which mainly consists of financiers and fund managers.
Texas is third with 51 billionaires, including those from the oil and gas sectors.
Illinois is fifth with 19 billionaires, including real estate moguls, including Sam Zell and members of the Pritzker family, founders of Hyatt Hotels.
“Most of the United States’ billionaires became wealthy slowly by building valuable companies in areas that many people find to be boring. One of the great things about America is that you’re free to start your own business and compound your investments over time to the point where you, too, can become a billionaire,” says Motley Fool.