The global wealth boom has created a new breed of billionaire in once-destitute countries like Turkey, India, Mexico and Russia. Propelled by their rising economies, robust currencies and globally competitive companies, they have ridden a surge in local stock markets that have reached previously untouchable heights in a short five-year timeframe. Now, a number of them are using their wealth to bolster their standing and push for social changes.
These entrepreneurs, who have made their billions in private sector industries like telecommunications, petrochemicals and finance, are distinct from a past generation of international billionaires, most with ties to Middle Eastern oil or valuable land holdings. Not only have they become the richest men in their countries; they are among the wealthiest in the world.