By Matt Symonds
The Forbes annual Billionaire list is an indicator of the companies and people are successful globally, and more generally the industries that are booming. In the first ever Forbes Billionaire list, in 1987, CEOs in real estate, manufacturing and retail dominated the list– with not one technology founder featuring.
Fast-forward to thelatest list, in March this year, and half of the top ten richest billionaires in the world are tied to the technology industry, such as Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg. This dramatic change over the last three decades depicts the massive digital transformation that virtually all industries have undergone, and the now importance and value of the technology industry as a whole.
One thing that hasn’t dramatically changed over the last 30 years, however, is the representation of women in this list. Female billionaires are scarce. In the technology industry in fact, not one of the top 50 richest people are women, and only 4 women feature in the top 100 – a dire statistic. This is just a representation of a wider systemic issue in the technology industry, in which, according to a PwC report only 5% of leadership positions in the technology sector are held by women.