There are many ways to rise to the top of the business world. While the vast majority of the world's richest people go unrecognised by members of the public (Carlos Slim Helu is hardly a household name, despite being the world's most wealthy man with a $69Billion dollar fortune) there are also a number of businessmen who have achieved celebrity through their business career. One could even argue that they are the most successful celebrities of them all, as the majority own companies which have thousands of fanatics and repeat customers.
, for example, is famed for his outrageous lifestyle and willingness to star in the adverts of his company – always in a tongue-and-cheek fashion. He is rarely out of the papers for long, having recently opened the world's first commercial spaceport in New Mexico (abseiling down the side of the building popping champagne, no less) and buying the UK's nationalised bank Northern Rock for his company. His self-made journey has also been an attraction – having dropped out of school at 16, he proceeded to become one of the most successful businessmen in Britain.
Equally, you can't invent the world's most used operating system and get away with it. Bill Gates, the creator of Microsoft, is worth approximately $61 Billion as of March 2012. But he is not only known for his achievements in computing – far from it. Perhaps his most prominent work is his philanthropic efforts, which have helped eliminate polio in India, spearheaded an effort to eradicate malaria, and committed over $2billion to small farmers. He is also frequently parodied on the radio, television and in popular culture.
But, as with all types of celebrity, even the business kind can turn sour, as Rupert Murdoch and News International discovered in the wake of the phone hacking crisis. Dragged by the scruff of his neck to answer questions from British MPs, he was later declared as not fit to run the company. Despite owning a media empire (or perhaps because of it) Murdoch found himself ridiculed by the majority of newspapers, satirists and public figures