Ingvar Kamprad, founder of Swedish furniture giant IKEA, has denied reports that he has surpassed Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates as the world's richest man, said a USA Today report.
The upcoming issue of Swedish business weekly Veckans Affarer has estimated Kamprad's wealth at 400 billion kronor ($53 billion), while Forbes magazine puts Bill Gates' fortune at $40.7 billion. The magazine said that the furniture magnate had thus overtaken Gates.
However, the furniture giant said it is incorrect to say that Ingvar Kamprad owns the entire company, along with all its stores. IKEA said this mistake was made very often.
The USA Today report quoted a company spokesperson as saying that 'Ingvar Kamprad does not own IKEA as he has donated the concern to the Dutch Stichting INGKA Foundation in 1982.'
Kamprad, 77, who now lives in Switzerland, no longer participates in the daily management of IKEA. Media reports said the dollar's slide against other currencies is the main reason why Kamprad has overtaken Gates.
In February, Forbes magazine's annual ranking of the world's billionaires had put Kamprad at No. 13, with an estimated fortune of $18.5 billion, with Bill Gates at No. 1. Forbes ranked investment guru Warren Buffett as the second richest man in the world after Gates.
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