Billionaires Who Live Surprisingly Humble Lifestyles
What’s the point of being a billionaire if one doesn’t lead a life of opulence, the envy of both the ordinary folks and millionaires? However, there is always an exception to even the strictest rule. Through their humble lifestyles and charitable causes, these five billionaires perfectly embody the law of limitation. They share their wealth for the greater good and lead by example!
Christy Walton, the widow of John T. Walton, is the heir to her late husband’s $18.2-billion fortune. John Walton was one of the sons of Sam Walton, the founder of Walmart. Christy’s net worth is around $7.3 billion and was on the Forbes feature as the richest woman in the world several times. However, she does not let her fortune define her. Instead, she lets her action do the talking!
Christy has a history of donating several billion dollars to many charitable organizations over two decades. The Walton Family Charitable Support Foundation is one of the beneficiaries of Christy’s generosity that gives monetary support to other organizations. This includes The Philanthropy Roundtable and the San Diego Zoological Society. She currently resides in Jackson, Wyoming, and dedicates her time and wealth to charity.
Azim Premji, popular as the “Czar of the Indian IT industry,” is the chairman of Wipro Limited and the tenth richest Indian. Named by TIME Magazine among the 100 most influential people on two occasions, Mr. Premji started his philanthropic activities by donating $2.2 billion to the Azim Premji Foundation for the improvement of India’s education.
Premji is fifth on the list of the people who have donated the most amount of money to charities. Besides charities in his country, he’s donated globally and gave away around half his fortune by signing The Giving Pledge in 2013. Azim Premji drives a 1996 Ford and has given away more than $8 billion throughout his life. Azim Premji Philanthropic Initiatives offers grants to various non-governmental organizations and engages in various philanthropic activities.
Amancio Ortega, the founder of the Inditex fashion group famous for its line of Zara clothing and accessories, is the sixth richest person and the second wealthiest retailer in the world as the head of the Ortega family. However, the billionaire doesn’t show off his vast fortune and instead leads a simple life in a modest apartment in La Coruna, Spain.
Furthermore, Amancio prefers to wear a simple white shirt, gray trousers, and a blue blazer, none of them Zara products, almost every day. He visits a local coffee shop for breakfast and even has lunch with his fellow employees at Zara’s cafeteria. It is surprising that despite being the founder of a leading fashion brand, Amancio doesn’t have a fascination for brands despite the fact that his net worth is $68.3 billion as of December 2019. In other words, he is not brand-conscious at all.
Business mogul Warren Buffett needs no introduction. As the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, Warren has amassed astronomical wealth and is famous as one of the most successful investors in the world. Warren Buffett is the fourth wealthiest person in the world, with an estimated net worth of $70.5 billion as of March 2020. Yet, before driving to his office in a gold Cadillac, Mr. Buffett picks up his breakfast from McDonald’s with the most expensive item costing just $3.17.
A notable philanthropist, Warren Buffett leads a humble lifestyle and pledges to donate 99% of his wealth for philanthropic causes, primarily through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. In 2009, Warren Buffett and Bill Gates founded The Giving Pledge via which billionaires can pledge to donate at least half of their massive fortunes.
Irish-American businessman and life-long philanthropist Chuck Feeney pioneered the idea of duty-free shopping. They made quite the fortune as a co-founder of the Duty-Free Shoppers Group. Chuck’s net worth is $2 million, which begs the question – why is he on a list of billionaires? Mr. Feeney and his wife Helga have given away over $8 billion to charities. He currently lives a life of frugality in an apartment in San Francisco and that’s a rental property.
In 1982, Feeney went on to establish the Atlantic Philanthropies, one of the largest private foundations in the world. Besides being the largest, it makes sure the donations are anonymous, which is another reason for its popularity.
Parting with one’s fortune for the less fortunate is the true mark of wealth. These billionaires, through their low-profile lifestyles and philanthropic activities, betray the extravagant ways of billionaires. They burst the bubble wherein a middle-class man is content with blaming the rich man’s fortune for his misfortune. Besides, they also show a way to the rest of the world on how to live a selfless life!
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