Which industries are making millionaires in the 21st century?
Whether you are involved in the development of wealthtech or simply assessing the range of different platforms that are currently out there, it is fascinating to take a step back and think for a second about how vital such services are to so many people in the 21st century.
It is thought that there are more than 16 million people across the globe who fall into the bracket of being high net-worth individuals – defined as those with assets of at least $1 million – with Capgemini’s analysis last year estimating that the total value of their assets was in the region of an incredible $63.5 trillion. Such figures are truly mind-blowing and do ultimately beg one simple question – just where does all of this wealth actually come from?
Well, if you’re looking at the issue purely from a geographical point of view, Capgemini would tell you that the US, Japan and Germany actually account for many of those with high net worth. However, a better way to tackle the question is to perhaps consider the industries that such individuals are involved in and ultimately whether there are any clear trends in terms of the sectors which are helping the rich get richer.
Progress through technology
One obvious starting point when it comes to addressing this issue in the 21st century is obviously technology. In the past couple of decades, the industry has basically transformed the way that we live our lives, impacting on all aspects of our day-to-day existence, from work to connecting with friends and so much more. Unsurprisingly, Forbes’ latest Rich List, published earlier this year, revealed that three of the top five richest people on the planet had made their fortune in technology.
Amazon’s Jeff Bezos was top of the list with an estimated net worth of $112 billion after he experienced the biggest single-year gain ever recorded. He took the number-one spot from Bill Gates, who was, of course, the founder of Microsoft and is thought to have a fortune of around $90 billion, while Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was fifth with $71 billion.
While the huge wealth of the biggest players in the tech sector may not be too much of a surprise, the speed at which individuals in the industry have hit huge figures may well be. Research from Betway Casino shown using Forbes data, millionaires in the industry tend to make the jump to billionaire status quicker than those in any other sector. The research outlines that it takes on average just over seven years for a technology millionaire to reach the next level, although it is always worth noting that it took the aforementioned Zuckerberg just 365 days to achieve the feat.
Ones to watch
While the world of technology clearly offers huge potential for transforming an individual’s wealth, there are of course a number of other sectors which continue to play a role in wealth creation. According to the World Wealth Report published by Capgemini back in 2016, the financial services industry is expected to create more millionaires in the decade up to 2025 than any other sector. The wealth-creating potential of the sector is of course nothing new, with the third richest man on Forbes’ list being Warren Buffett, the so-called “Oracle of Omaha” and giant in the investment world.
Unsurprisingly, technology did not trail too far behind in second place, while the rest of the top five included healthcare, manufacturing and real estate. Such results are perhaps not hugely surprising, particularly considering the important role that medicine plays in all of our lives and the prediction from market intelligence firm EvaluatePharma that the global pharmaceutical industry will reach a value of $1.12 trillion in 2022. Furthermore, we all need goods and – of course – rely on having a home too. Last year the Guardian reported that more than a quarter of the 100 wealthiest people on the Sunday Times Rich List in the UK had property listed as a major source of income.
A range of backgrounds
So, although the fairly sizeable shadow of the technology sector looms across wealth creation in the 21st century, it is safe to say that it is not the only industry which is proving to be hugely lucrative for a great number of people.
A range of areas are having an impact on the wealth of individuals and it perhaps demonstrates how it remains important for those involved in the development of wealthtech and banking tech to ensure that their offerings are able to meet the needs of people coming from a range of different backgrounds and industries. With a rising number of people seemingly joining the ranks of the wealthy, such platforms could well and truly be more important – and more in demand – than ever before.
By Daryll Jones