John Fredriksen is a man of humble beginnings. The Norway native was the son of a welder and went to work in shipyards after dropping out of high school. At the age of 27, he went in to business for himself and is now the owner of the biggest fleet of oil tankers in the world. He was once considered the richest man in Norway, but resigned his Norwegian citizenship for a Cypress passport and currently resides in the U.K. Forbes lists the shipping tycoon as the 120th richest man in the world with a net worth of $10.4 billion in 2015.
Fredriksen is the majority shareholder in the offshore drilling company SeaDrill and the fishing company Marine Harvest and has interest in the supply vessel company Deep Sea Supply and Golden Ocean Group – a dry bulk company. He made a majority of his wealth when his tankers had picked up oil and made huge profits during the Iran-Iraq wars and was once referred to as “the lifeline to the Ayatollah.”
He was married to Inger Katharina Astrup Fredriksen, who passed away a few years ago and is the father of two twin daughters. He currently owns luxurious homes in Oslo, Cyprus, Chelsea, and Marbella.
In 2012, Bloomberg Markets Magazine listed Fredriksen as one of the world’s “50 Most Influential.”