June 16, 2021

From Anna Wintour to Amancio Ortega, these 11 billionaires have succeeded brilliantly without a university education

The FBI has charged dozens of people, including actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, in connection with a fraudulent college admissions ring. Thirty-three parents are accused of paying admissions counselor at William Singer University to help their children get into elite universities. Thirteen coaches who have benefited from bribes are also believed to be involved in this affair. The idea that these parents could have committed a crime to help their children succeed made us think: is a university education essential to be successful?

If you ask the 11 people below, including some billionaires and real estate moguls like Leonardo Del Vecchio, Michele Ferrero or even Liliane Bettencourt, they will definitely answer you no. It turns out that none of them have ever enrolled in a college course, and yet they are some of the most influential people in the world today. Check out the list and it’s likely that your opinion about the value of higher education will change. Here are some billionaires who have been brilliantly successful without a college education.

Leonardo Del Vecchio


At the age of 25, Leonardo Del Vecchio founded the brand of eyewear maker Luxottica, which recently merged with French ophthalmic optics company Essilor. The billionaire octogenarian trained as an apprentice designer in a car parts and eyewear factory as a teenager, according to Forbes.

Savitri Jindal

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Savitri Jindal is CEO of the Jindal group, and the widow of OP Jindal, the founder of the conglomerate. Its business portfolio includes JSW Steel, JSW Energy, JSW Infrastructure and Jindal Steel & Power.

Michele Ferrero


Prior to the Italian chocolatier’s demise in 2015, he was on Forbes’ billionaire list as the 30th richest person in the world, according to Business Insider’s Tanza Loudenback. Ferrero left his fortune to his family; his son, Giovanni, is now CEO of the Ferrero group.

Lee Shau Kee

Getty Images/Bloomberg

Lee is the founder of Henderson Land Development, a Hong Kong-based listed real estate conglomerate that had $ 46 billion in assets in 2017, according to Bloomberg. But Lee’s family was so poor when he was little that they couldn’t afford to eat meat or fish just twice a month, according to Forbes.

Anna Wintour

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Anna Wintour, who served as the inspiration for the character of Miranda Priestly in “The Devil Wears Prada”, has been the editor-in-chief of Vogue for 30 years. One of her first experiences in fashion was as an employee in the London clothing store Biba when she was 15.

Li Ka-Shing


Li Ka-Shing, or, as he’s been known, “Superman,” retired from CK Hutchison Holdings and CK Asset Holdings in 2018. His current fortune is estimated at $ 31.7 billion. Ka-Shing lived a real obstacle course. As Business Insider’s Harrison Jacobs reported, Ka-Shing’s father died of tuberculosis after the family fled from southern China to Hong Kong during World War II. Ka-Shing had to leave school before the age of 16 to work in a plastics factory.

Ingvar Kamprad


The late IKEA billionaire founder was completely self-taught. As Business Insider’s Loudenback reports, Kamprad was an entrepreneur from a young age: he started selling matches from the age of 5. Kamprad started IKEA using the money his father had given him to reward him for his grades in elementary school despite his dyslexia.

Liliane bettencourt

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Before her death in 2017, the Forbes ranking ranked Liliane Bettencourt as the richest woman in the world. Bettencourt was one of the heirs to L’Oréal’s fortune and her wealth was estimated at around $ 45 billion, according to the Washington Post.

Karl Albrecht

Michael Gottschalk / AP

Albrecht and his brother, Theodor, transformed their mother’s corner store in Essen, Germany into the massive Aldi supermarket. As Business Insider previously reported, the Albrechts, both deceased, were deeply discreet. According to Forbes, Karl Albrecht had a fortune of $ 25 billion in 2014.

Christy Walton

The Waltons, descendants of Walmart founder Sam Walton, are the richest family in the world. Christy Walton’s net worth, according to Forbes, is $ 7.4 billion. She inherited this fortune when her husband, John Walton, died in a plane crash in 2005.

Amancio Ortega

Miguel Vidal / Reuters

Ortega is the founder of clothing store Zara and the sixth richest person in the world, according to the Forbes ranking. His net worth is estimated at $ 66.6 billion.

Version originale : Shana Lebowitz / Business Insider