Microsoft's Gates dethroned as world's richest person by cheap furniture magnate

IKEA bests the Beast

All hail Ingvar Kamprad!

The Swedish founder of the IKEA furniture chain has passed Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates as the world's richest person, according to reports out of Sweden. Business weekly Veckans Affarer is set to report that Kamprad holds a fortune of 400 billion crowns or $53 billion. This would put him $6 billion ahead of Gates.

In its most recent survey, Forbes magazine placed Gates' wealth at $47 billion and had him topping the world's richest list. Kampard, 77, came in at 13 on the list with $18.5 billion.

The Swedes, however, believe that a weak US dollar has thrust Kampard to the top of the list since Forbes did its calculations.

Kamprad is said to be on the frugal side, flying economy and driving an old Volvo. He keeps his wealth secure in tax-haven Switzerland.

If you think about it, Microsoft and IKEA are not terribly dissimilar. Both companies sell mass-produced gear that requires a lot of assembly and attention. But apparently this model pays quite well. ®

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