Austin's Richest

These 3 Austin billionaires rank among the richest people in America

These 3 Austin billionaires rank among the richest people in America

John Paul DeJoria
John Paul DeJoria is one of Forbes' richest Americans — and the second-richest in Austin. Wikimedia Commons

Forbes says it's harder than ever to make the list of the 400 Richest Americans. The cut-off point for this year's list, released Tuesday, is $1.7 billion, the highest it’s been in the 33 years that the magazine has tracked American wealth.

Even so, 36 Texans made the list, including three in Austin.

While most of the Texans dropped down on the list, largely due to the fall in energy stocks and the rise of high-tech entrepreneurs with higher net worths, Austin's richest climbed the ranks. Austin computer magnate Michael Dell rose to No. 23 on the list. His net worth is estimated at $19.1 billion, up from $17.7 billion (and No. 25 ranking) a year ago. 

Austinite John Paul DeJoria comes in at No. 234. The hair care and tequila mogul is worth an estimated $2.8 billion. Austin-based investor Robert Smith ranks No. 268, with an estimated $2.5 billion. Smith is one of the few African-Americans on the entire list. 

Houston billionaires
Leading the list of Houstonians once again is Rich Kinder at No. 52, with an estimated net worth of $8.9 billion. But Kinder's wealth declined nearly $2 billion from last year, when he was ranked No. 41, with a net worth of $10.7 billion. Others from Houston on the list are: 

  • No. 73: Jeffrey Hildebrand, oil — $6.3 billion
  • No. 94: Dannine Avavara, pipelines — $5 billion
  • No. 94: Scott Duncan, pipelines — $5 billion
  • No. 94: Milane Frantz, pipelines — $5 billion
  • No. 94: Randa Williams, pipelines — $5 billion
  • No. 164: Dan Friedkin, owner/CEO Gulf States Toyota — $3.6 billion 
  • No. 194: Bob McNair, Houston Texans owner — $3.3 billion
  • No. 227: John Arnold, founder Centaurus Advisors — $2.9 billion
  • No. 279: George Bishop, oil — $2.4 billion
  • No. 293: Tilman Fertitta, chairman/CEO Fertitta Entertainment — $2.3 billion
  • No. 372: Fayez Sarofim, investor — $1.85 billion

Dallas billionaires
In Dallas, 12 billionaires made the list, led by college-dropout-turned-investor Andrew Beal, at No. 42. Although Beal has a net worth of $10.9 billion, he lost more than $1.2 billion from last year, when he was No. 38, with a net worth of $12.1 billion. Others on the list are:

  • No. 76: Robert Rowling, investor — $6.1 billion
  • No. 83: Ray Lee Hunt, oil/real estate — $5.6 billion
  • No. 86: Kelcy Warren, pipelines — $5.5 billion
  • No. 90: Trevor Reese-Jones, oil & gas — $5.3 billion
  • No. 94: Jerry Jones, Dallas Cowboys owner — $5 billion
  • No. 138: H. Ross Perot, computer services/real estate — $4 billion
  • No. 211: Mark Cuban, Dallas Mavericks owner — $3 billion
  • No. 211: Ray Davis, pipelines — $3 billion
  • No. 211: Richard Rainwater, investments — $3 billion (Rainwater passed away just before the list was released)
  • No 293: W. Herbert Hunt, oil — $2.3 billion
  • No. 327: Gerald Ford, banking — $2.1 billion

Fort Worth billionaires
Fort Worth resident Alice Walton led all Texans on the list at No. 12, with an estimated net worth of $32 billion. She, too, dropped several places from last year's list, when she was at No. 9, with an estimated net worth of $34.9 million.

Others from Fort Worth on the list are Robert Bass (No. 211, net worth $3 billion, oil/investments); David Bonderman (No. 256, $2.6 billion, private equity); Edward Bass, Lee Bass, and Sid Bass (tied at No. 342, $2 billion each, private investments); and Timothy Headington (No. 358, $1.9 billion, oil and gas and investments).

The rest of the state
San Antonio supermarket owner Charles Butt is ranked No. 44, with a net worth of $10.7 billion. Former Houston Astros owner Drayton McLane Jr., who lives in Temple, rounds out the Texans on the list at No. 375, with a net worth of $1.8 billion.