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Forbes’ annual list reveals Minnesota’s billionaires

Forbes released its annual round-up of people who have more money than most people can ever hope to spend – the billionaires list.

Topped by Bill Gates – who is just ahead of Warren Buffett, and with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg cracking the top five for the first time –  Forbes’ yearly list always generates plenty of comments.

In Minnesota, six people make the list. That’s roughly 0.00001 percent of the state’s population of 5.5 million people.

The richest man in the state, Forbes says, is once again Whitney MacMillan, the last member of the Cargill-MacMillan family to serve as CEO of America’s largest private company, Cargill (he retired in 1995). He is worth a cool $5.6 billion, according to Forbes, making him the 275th richest person in the world.

Fourteen members of the MacMillan family are on the list, but Whitney is one of only three that live in Minnesota. The other two, Martha and John, own smaller stakes in the company and are worth $1.2 billion each – the fifth and sixth richest in the state.

After Whitney MacMillan, Stanley Hubbard is the next richest in Minnesota, with his media empire Hubbard Broadcasting helping him to a net worth of $2.3 billion.

Next is Glen Taylor, the owner of the Minnesota Timberwolves, Lynx, the Star Tribune newspaper, and Mankato-based printing company Taylor Corp. Forbes has pegged him at $1.85 billion.

And William F. Austin – who opened his first hearing aid shop in St. Louis Park in 1967  and turned it into one of the world leaders in hearing aid technology, Starkey Hearing – is Minnesota’s fourth richest person, with a net worth of $1.4 billion.

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