Around this time of the year each year I enjoy reading the AFR Rich 200 list to see what lessons I can learn.
On studying this year's list, clearly no two stories were the same, however there are commonalities in how Australia’s 200 richest people got that way.
Reading the back stories it was obvious that these entrepreneurs worked long and took risks to get where they are today.
They chose strategic industries and saw their fortunes rise with global trends.
They bet on economics as well as on themselves.
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The majority of the names on the Rich 200 are there because they started and led a business to national and global success.
But not just any business.
Certain industries stand out - such as manufacturing, retail, technology and financial services
Source: Australian Financial Review
It’s not just a successful business that can make you rich.
Over a quarter (51) of the Rich 200 made their money in property, with Meriton’s founder Harry Triguboff coming in a close second with a personal fortune of $12.77 billion.
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While fortunes of our industrialists, IT wizards and mining billionaires waxes and wanes, looking back over the years no matter how the Australian economy changes, the Rich 200 has always been dominated by property entrepreneurs.
In Australia, this figure hasn't budged much for the last 35 years.
No other single investment has been as likely to deliver steady returns over the past three decades.
And you’ll find that many of those who made their money in other sectors stored it in real estate.
Since many businesses are founded by groups of two or more people, you’d think that there would be plenty of duos and trios on the list.
But this isn’t the case.
While there are many benefits working with business partners, when it comes to making a lot of money, the experiences of the Rich Listers suggests you’re better off going alone.
At an age when most Australians are looking forward to retirement, plenty of people on the list are still signing deals and making money.
The average age of this year’s Rich List is 66, but far off retirement.
Plenty of them aren’t the type to relax and smell the roses anyway.
For example Stan Perron aged 95, who is the oldest member of the list coming in at #15, is showing no signs of slowing down.
He has a vast business empire underpinned by a $3.5 billion property portfolio.
If you want to learn more lessons from Australia's richest people please read: What we can learn from Australia’s richest people