Charged-up wealth

One Texas billionaire is richer than Fort Worth's Alice Walton, Forbes says

Texas billionaire's richer than Fort Worth's Alice Walton, Forbes says

Alice Walton of Wal-Mart
Don't worry, Alice Walton is still among the country's most wealthy. Photo courtesy of Wal-Mart

No shocker here: The latest Forbes 400 list puts Tesla and SpaceX guru Elon Musk at No. 2 among the richest Americans and No. 1 among the richest Texans.

What is shocking, however, is how much Musk’s net worth skyrocketed from 2020 to 2021. Hint: It’s more than $100 billion.

This year, the Forbes 400 estimates his net worth stood at $190.5 billion as of September 3. To give that some context, the size of the economy in the state of Kansas exceeds $193 billion.

Last year, Musk’s estimated net worth was $68 billion. This means that from 2020 to 2021, his net worth exploded by $122.5 billion, or 180 percent.

Among the richest Americans, only Amazon’s Jeff Bezos beats Musk — but not by much. The Forbes 400 pegs Bezos’ net worth at $201 billion as of September 3, up from $179 billion at the same time last year.

Forbes lists Musk’s residence as Austin, although he has said he spends much of his time in Boca Chica. The Texas Gulf Coast community hosts Starbase, a launch site for SpaceX rockets. On October 7, Musk officially announced that Tesla would shift its headquarters from Palo Alto, California, to Austin.

Before Musk arrived in the Lone Star State, Walmart heir Alice Walton of Fort Worth ranked as the richest person in Texas. She’s now in second place, with a net worth estimated at $67.9 billion (up from last year's estimated $62.3 billion). Walton ranks as the 12th richest American and richest American woman on this year’s Forbes 400.

According to a 2021 report by Bloomberg, the Waltons hold the crown as the richest family in the world.

Here's how the rest of Dallas-Fort Worth's billionaires fared on this year's Forbes list:

  • Banking and real estate mogul Andy Beal of Dallas holds the No. 5 spot in Texas and No. 78 nationally. His estimated net worth is $9.9 billion. Last year: $7.6 billion, No. 67.
  • Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones of Dallas sits at No. 7 in Texas and No. 86 nationally with an estimated net worth of $9.1 billion. Last year: $8.6 billion, No. 56. 
  • Money manager Ken Fisher of Dallas ranks 10th in Texas and 151st nationally with an estimated net worth of $6.4 billion. Last year: not listed.
  • Oil and real estate titan Ray Lee Hunt of Dallas ranks 16th in Texas and ties for 188th nationally with an estimated net worth of $5.7 billion. Last year: $4.6 billion, No. 154.
  • Oil and investment mogul Robert Bass of Fort Worth ranks 17th in Texas and ties for 212th nationally with an estimated net worth of $5 billion. Last year: $4.8 billion, No. 139.
  • Private equity kingpin David Bonderman of Fort Worth ties for 21st in Texas and ties for 247th nationally with an estimated net worth of $4.5 billion. Last year: $4 billion, No. 186.
  • Media magnate and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban of Dallas ties for 21st in Texas and ties for 247th nationally with an estimated net worth of $4.5 billion. Last year: $4.2 billion, No. 177. 
  • Oil and gas honcho Trevor Rees-Jones of Dallas ties for 21st in Texas and ties for 247th nationally with an estimated net worth of $4.5 billion. Last year:  $3.5 billion, No. 228.
  • Hotel and investment guru Robert Rowling of Dallas ranks 25th in Texas and ties for 261st nationally with an estimated net worth of $4.3 billion. Last year: $3.9 billion, No. 197. 
  • Margot Birmingham Perot of Dallas, widow of tech and real estate entrepreneur H. Ross Perot Sr., ties for 27th in Texas and ties for 273rd nationally with an estimated net worth of $4.1 billion. Last year: $4 billion, No. 186.
  • Oil and gas tycoon Kelcy Warren of Dallas ranks 29th in Texas and ties for 289th nationally with an estimated net worth of $3.9 billion. Last year: $2.8 billion, No. 299.
  • Real estate bigwig H. Ross Perot Jr. of Dallas ranks 32nd in Texas and 363rd nationally with an estimated net worth of $3.2 billion. Last year: $2.5 billion, No. 339.
  • Homebuilder Donald Horton and family of Fort Worth tie for 35th in Texas and tie for 389th nationally with an estimated net worth of $2.9 billion. 
  • Oil baron W. Herbert Hunt of Dallas ties for 35th in Texas and ties for 389th nationally with an estimated net worth of $2.9 billion. Last year: not listed.

And here's where billionaires from other major metros in Texas stand on the Forbes 400 list.

Austin (in addition to Musk)

  • Michael Dell, founder, chairman, and CEO of Round Rock-based Dell Technologies. Estimated net worth: $50.1 billion. Texas rank: No. 3. U.S. rank: No. 18.
  • Robert Smith, founder, chairman, and CEO of private equity firm Vista Equity Partners. Estimated net worth: $6.7 billion. Texas rank: No. 9. U.S. rank: No. 141.
  • Vodka titan Bert “Tito” Beveridge. Estimated net worth: $4.8 billion. Texas rank: No. 18. U.S. rank: No. 224 (tie).
  • IT entrepreneur Thai Lee. Estimated net worth: $4.1 billion. Texas rank: No. 27 (tie). U.S. rank: No. 273 (tie).
  • Software entrepreneur Joe Liemandt. Estimated net worth: $3 billion. Texas rank: No. 33 (tie). U.S. rank: No. 377 (tie).
  • Jim Bryer, founder and CEO of venture capital firm Bryer Capital. Estimated net worth: $2.9 billion. Texas rank: 35 (tie). U.S. rank: No. 389 (tie).

Houston

  • Pipeline magnate Richard Kinder of Houston ranks eighth in Texas and 128th nationally with an estimated net worth of $7.1 billion.
  • Hospitality king and Houston Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta of Houston ranks 11th in Texas and 158th nationally with an estimated net worth of $6.3 billion.
  • Houston pipeline heirs Dannine AvaraScott DuncanMilane Frantz, and Randa Duncan Williams tie for 12th place in Texas and tie for 161st nationally. Each has an estimated net worth of $6.2 billion.
  • Software entrepreneur Robert Brockman of Houston ranks 19th in Texas and ties for 229th nationally with a net worth of $4.7 billion.
  • Oil mogul Jeffery Hildebrand of Houston ranks 20th in Texas and ties for 240th nationally with a net worth of $4.6 billion.
  • Toyota mega-dealer Dan Friedkin of Houston ranks 24th in Texas and ties for 253rd with an estimated net worth of $4.4 billion.
  • Houston Texans owner Janice McNair of Houston ranks 26th in Texas and ties for 269th nationally with an estimated net worth of $4.2 billion.
  • Hedge fund honcho John Arnold of Houston ties for 30th in Texas and ties for 358th nationally with an estimated net worth of $3.3 billion.