The Real Deal New York

Here’s where NYC’s real estate players ranked on Forbes’ billionaires list

Ross, LeFrak and Schwarzman took the top places
March 21, 2017 02:25PM

From top: Stephen Schwarzman, Stephen Ross and Richard LeFrak

When it comes to international billionaires, New York City’s real estate tycoons are relatively small fry.

Forbes released its 2017 World’s Billionaires list this week. The city’s highest ranked real estate player is Blackstone Group’s TRData LogoTINY CEO Stephen Schwarzman, whose net worth of $11.7 billion puts him in 112th spot. A few rungs down is Stephen Ross, who came in at 186th place. The Hudson Yards developer has a net worth of $7.4 billion, according to Forbes. Richard LeFrak, with $6.5 billion, is 219th place on the list.

Not far behind is Equity Residential founder Sam Zell, whose $5 billion earned him 324th place on the international list. Hartz Group CEO Leonard Stern is ranked 414th, with $4.2 billion, and Jerry Speyer, of Tishman Speyer, placed at 501st, with a net worth pegged at $3.7 billion. Retail magnate Jeff Sutton — who has $3.6 billion — came in at 522nd. President Donald Trump worth is $3.5 billion, according to Forbes, putting him at 544th on the list. He dropped 208 spots because of Manhattan’s softening real estate market, according to the magazine.

Allan Goldman and his younger sister Jane, who run Solil Management,  jointly took 660th place, each with a $3 billion net worth. Boston Properties TRData LogoTINY Mort Zuckerman is ranked 693rd, with $2.9 billion, while Charles Cohen, with $2.8 billion, is listed at 717th place. WeWork’s Adam Neumann, with $2.5 billion, is ranked 814th of the world’s billionaires.

According to the list, the country’s richest real estate developer is Donald Bren, chairman of the Irvine Company, who made 66th on the list with $15.2 billion. The world’s richest real estate tycoon is Dalian Wanda Group CEO Wang Jianlin, who placed 18th with $13.3 billion.

For the fourth year in a row, Bill Gates topped the list with $86 billion and Berkshire Hathaway’s Warren Buffett came in second with $75.6 billion. The number of billionaires the magazine counted increased 13 percent to 2,043 this year, the Wall Street Journal reported. Forbes said healthy stock markets and higher commodity prices are behind the jump.

Last year, the New York City’s real estate players barely made the country’s top 50 in the magazine’s ranking of the 400 wealthiest Americans.  Schwarzman was No. 45, with his net wealth then pegged at $10.3 billion. Ross ranked 58th in the country’s rich list and LeFrak came in 73rd place.

While few billionaires have actually made their fortunes in New York City real estate, many live here (or have second, third or fourth homes). Last year, The Real Deal mapped out where the richest New Yorkers live.   [Forbes]Miriam Hall