The Net Worth Of International Celebrities

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    Through hard work, luck, or a combination of the two, these men and women became famous in their countries, and beyond. They exemplify the heights one can reach in the society of their homeland and reveal the opportunities available to those who live or travel there.

    Dancing with a classmate, St. Petersburg, 1970. N362575 02: (EUROPE OUT) FILE PHOTO: Vladimir Putin, right, dances with his classmates Elena, during a party in Saint Petersburg, Russia, 1970. Putin used to be shy and dancing wasn''t frequent for the actual acting president of Russia. Now Elena is married to Putin's classmate Sergey Kudrov. (Photo by Laski Diffusion)

    At the top of our list has to be a man and a country both notable for their rise to international prominence in the last decade: Vladimir Putin and Russia. Putin is arguably the most famous man in Russia and with his net worth, perhaps the richest man in the world. Sources estimate his wealth at around a whopping two hundred billion! Yes, that’s roughly a hundred and thirty billion more than Bill Gates. Most of this money was accumulated when Russia’s oil industry experienced enormous growth and Putin made sure that he and a select group of loyal comrades cashed in on the boom.Of course we all know from his much publicized photo blog, that Putin travels round the world fishing, hunting and riding motorcycles…but do you know what Russia’s most famous man enjoys spending his money on the most? If you guessed Vodka, you’re wrong. The world’s richest man loves to drink beer! He reputedly acquired a taste for it in Germany while stationed there as a KGB operative. One thing is certain: two hundred billion will you buy a lot of beer.



     Saudi Arabia


    Not all well known people are famous, some are infamous. Perhaps Saudi Arabia’s most famous citizen of the twentieth century also happened to become the most hunted man in the world after September 11. Osama Bin Laden, the founder of al-Qaeda and the leader of multiple terrorist groups across the globe, was born in Ridyah, Saudi Arabia to a billionaire. Osama’s father, Mohammed bin Awad bin Laden was an immensely wealthy man who made his money in construction and Osama was said to have inherited a fortune of three hundred million dollars. Strangely, Osama, by all accounts, was a very frugal and soft spoken man who preferred austerity. Reportedly, he liked spending his wealth doing simple things like taking his twenty-six children for shooting parties or picnics in the desert. 




    It is arguable that J. K. Rowling competes with Queen Elizabeth for Britain’s most famous woman, but one simply can’t tell a tale of celebrity riches without choosing Rowling as one of Britain’s best examples. Did you know at one time Rowling was a single mother on social welfare, drifting from job to job in near poverty? All that changed when Bloomsbury published the struggling author’s first book in 1997 in the now legendary Harry Potter series. This lovely lady went from zero to hero and in a short time became one of England’s richest women. Her net worth these days after countless Harry Potter books and films, is estimated to hover around the one billion mark! Rowling likes to spend her money on charitable causes and most notably, started her own organization called Lumos that seeks to provide education, healthcare and assistance to impoverished children in orphanages around the world. In fact, Rowling’s billionaire status has fluctuated over the years, due to her giving so much of her wealth away. The author who touched so many hearts, has a huge heart of her own.





    Germany has produced some of the world’s most renowned musicians and athletes, but what about scientists? How about Albert Einstein? The father of relativity was born in Ulm, Württemberg, Germany in 1879 and the rest is well, history. Albert Einstein became the most famous physicist of the twentieth century, winning the Nobel Peace Prize and crossing cultural barriers to become somewhat of a popular icon. Germany’s most famous scientist had only a net worth of one million dollars when he died, but what he lacked in funds he made up for in fame. Einstein’s humor and wisdom have been immortalized in books containing his quotes and his heirs now manage a twelve million dollar cottage industry. While alive, Einstein maintained a simple lifestyle enjoying music, especially his beloved Mozart, and teaching at the Institute of Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey until his death in 1955. His most radical expenditure revolved around spending his genius to challenge conventional wisdom about matter and spacetime.





    There’s more to Austria than meets the eye. How about none other than Arnold Schwarzenegger, Austria’s most famous body builder, film star and Californian governor? Arnold was born in Thal, Austria and he came from humble beginnings. His father was a local policeman who discouraged his son’s body building obsessions. But that didn’t deter Arnold and in 1967, when he was twenty, he won the Mr. Universe title. Arnold eventually immigrated to the United States to follow his dream of becoming a Hollywood movie star. He hit the big time when The Terminator was released in 1984 and Arnold found himself set firmly on a path for super stardom and a string of feature films. Today Arnold’s net worth is estimated at three hundred million dollars and at sixty-eight years old, he is still going strong. Arnold likes the ladies and after a much publicized divorce we discovered he had fathered at least one love child. But when Arnold is not paying child support he likes to live large. He owns a thirty-eight million dollar private jet and enjoys driving a Porsche 911 Carrera convertible. When he’s feeling casual, however, he simply revs up one of his custom Harleys.



    Next on list is Russia’s neighbor China. One simply can’t discuss celebrity and fame in China without mentioning their most famous export: Jackie Chan. Jackie Chan is a martial arts movie star beloved around the world that was born in Hong Kong. Not only known for his acting, Chan is also a director, writer and famous crooner in China, releasing two very popular hits: “Cantopop” and “Mandopop”. It is reported that his fortune stands at an amazing two hundred and thirty million. Jackie is not shy about spending his money. Recently he dropped a mere twenty of his two hundred and thirty million on a private jet that comes replete with a custom made wooden interior and reclining sleeper seats. Jackie knows how to travel in style.





    The most famous woman of France has to be the one who once said, “The best things in life are free. The second best are very expensive.” Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel was born in 1883 in Saumur, Maine-et-Loire, France to a single mother in a hospital for the poor. From such inauspicious beginnings, Coco Chanel rose like a fashion phoenix to become one of the world’s most famous designers. She revolutionized the way young women dressed by deconstructing the feminine form to reflect a casual masculine look. Needless to say, after decades of empire building and numerous romantic liaisons with rich and powerful men, Chanel had amassed a considerable fortune. Today the Chanel brand is estimated to be worth around nineteen billion dollars. Chanel would have approved of such extravagance. Chanel spent most of her time in the company of aristocrats, and enjoyed collecting pearls, diamonds and exquisite fragrances she would later manufacture. She owned a spectacular villa on the French Riviera called La Pausa, and in her later years lived in complete luxury at the Hotel Ritz in Paris. 




    In 1962 a new kind of sizzle appeared in the film “Two Women”, and an Italian star was born when Sophia Loren was nominated for an academy award for best actress. Italy’s most famous Hollywood celebrity was born in 1934 in Rome and started her career as a beauty pageant contestant. She began acting at the age of fifteen and by the 1960’s was an international star. Sophia is still alive and as beautiful and as rich as ever. Today, at the age of eighty-one, her net worth is estimated to be a cool seventy-five million dollars. Sophia likes to spend her money on best friend Armani’s frocks and her second best friend Gianfranco Ferre’s furs. However, Sophia, like so many larger than life stars, also devotes considerable time and money to charities like the Alannah & Madeline Foundation which raises funds for children’s causes.



    You may think Iceland is cold and drab but one hot star melts the bleak Nordic landscape with her famous voice: singer and performance artist Björk Guðmundsdóttir. Known only as Björk to her slew of international fans, Björk was born in 1965 in Reykjavìk, Iceland and started studying the classical piano and flute at the tender age of six. This prodigy burst onto the pop music scene in 1987 when her band the Sugarcubes produced the hit single, “Birthday Suit”. But Björk broke all music molds in 1993 when she released a phenomenally successful solo album entitled “Debut”. Björk was ranked as one of the 100 most influential women in music by VHI and has sold over twenty million records. All those records have amassed Björk a tidy fortune and she is reputed to be worth forty-five million dollars today. Björk once owned the the third largest island of Iceland, Elliðaey, only accessible by helicopter, but now likes to spend her money yachting around the world with her significant other and lives part time in Noel Coward’s former New York abode when she’s not sailing.



    There are quite a few Spaniards who have achieved fame and fortune across the world. But perhaps the youngest and most exciting is the tennis sensation Rafael Nadal! At only 19 years old he won his first French Open. A terror on the clay courts, he went on to win another nine and in 2010 won the prestigious US Open. Rafael has grown up before our very eyes and the darling of tennis has also been busy accumulating green stuff. Rafael has won over seventy-two million dollars in prize money and earns at least twenty-eight million dollars a year from his endorsements! In 2014 he was named one of the richest tennis players in the world and has a reported net worth of one hundred million dollars! Rafael knows how to party and likes to play tennis wearing an 800,000 dollar Richard Mille watch and when vacationing, opts for luxury boating holidays. Rumor has it he has been shopping for his own yacht with his model/fiancee girlfriend.

    United States


    Finally a land where everyone is rich and famous or can become so if they work hard enough, right? So choosing America’s most famous celebrity is both a treat (so many to choose from) and a task. We can’t ignore the elephant in the room and the supernatural stardom of America’s most celebrated family: The Kardashians. Of the clan, the most famous would have have to be the raven-haired Armenian with the perfect pout: Kim Kardashian. Since a certain tape was circulated and after countless licensing deals, television royalties and several marriages, Kim is reported to be worth a juicy eighty-five million dollars with a healthy salary of twenty-five to thirty million dollars a year! Her expenditures are well publicized, but did you know she sometimes spends up to one million a month just shopping? Some of her more notable purchases have included a $100,000 Cartier watch and $750,000 Lamborghini for hubby Kanye! You can’t say Kim isn’t generous but keeping up with her is not a job for mere mortals.

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