The 15 Richest People in Georgia Right Now

The Peach State is one of the American states with the highest number of billionaire residents. Below is a list of the 15 richest people in Georgia and how they made their fortune. Home Depot co-founder Arthur Blank and Calendly founder Tope Awotona are some of the billionaires featured on this list.

15. Sara Blakely

Net worth: $1.1 billion

Source of wealth: Spanx

Global rank: #2448

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 51

She returned to the three-comma club this year after failing to make the world billionaires list by Forbes in 2020 and 2021. Sara Blakely is the founder of the shapewear brand Spanx. She’s the second wealthiest woman in Georgia after Trudy Cathy who has a fortune of $4.6 billion.

The brand’s products which include leggings, pants, denim, shapewear, and women’s activewear — are sold in more than 50 countries around the globe. The billionaire also owns a minority stake in the Atlanta Hawks of the NBA. Last year she was ranked #39 on America’s Self-Made Women by Forbes.

In October last year, Blakely agreed to sell a majority stake in Spanx to Blackstone valuing the shapewear company at $1.2 billion.

14. Tope Awotona

tope-awotona

Net worth: $1.4 billion

Source of wealth: Software

Global rank: #2076

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 41

Nigerian-American billionaire Tope Awotona is one of the richest people in Georgia and one of the wealthiest U.S immigrants. Tope, who moved to the U.S as a teenager, is the CEO and founder of Calendly, a scheduling software he founded in 2013 out of his own frustration with the back-and-forth emails required to schedule meetings.

 Before launching Calendly, Tope had tried other ventures like selling garden equipment and projectors, which failed. He became a billionaire in 2022 after receiving a $350 investment which valued Calendly at $3 billion. According to Yahoo Finance, the scheduling software which has more than 10 million users, had revenues of $100 million last year.

13. David Zalik

Net worth: $1.9 billion

Source of wealth: Financial technology

Global rank: #1579

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 48

Zalik is the CEO and founder of GreenSky, a $500 million revenue financial technology company based in Atlanta. GreenSky provides technology to banks and other financial institutions to make loans to consumers for healthcare, and home improvement among other reasons.

According to Forbes, the company has facilitated more than $15 billion in loans for home improvement projects through a web of banks and 13,000 contractors. Goldman Sachs acquired GreenSky in 2022 for an estimated $2.24 billion.

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12. Joe Rogers, Jr

joe-rogers-jr

Net worth: $2 billion

Source of wealth: Waffle House

Global rank: #1513

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 75

Joe Rogers Jr. is the chairman and former CEO of Waffle House, a chain of restaurants with about 2,000 locations in 25 U.S states, including 439 in Georgia. His fortune stands at $2 billion making him one of the richest people in Georgia. Waffle House was founded by his father Joe Rogers Sr and Tom Forkner. The restaurant which is open 24 hours a day 7 days a week, has an annual turnover of more than $1 billion.

11. Ted Turner

Net worth: $2.3 billion

Source of wealth: Cable television

Global rank: #1341

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 83

Ted Turner took control of his father’s billboard business, Turner Outdoor Advertising and turned it into a media empire. He joined the company in 1960 after being expelled from Brown University before earning his degree. In 1980 he founded CNN, the first 24-hour cable news channel as well as TBS.

The billionaire is the former owner of the Atlanta Hawks of the NBA and the Atlanta Braves of the MLB. He’s the second-largest individual landowner in the United States with about 2,000,000 acres. He owns ranches in Oklahoma, Montana, Kansas, New Mexico, South Dakota, and Nebraska. Turner is a member of the Giving Pledge.

8. Trudy Cathy White

trudy-cathy-white

Net worth: $4.6 billion

Source of wealth: Chick-fil-A

Global rank: #622

Residence: Hampton, Georgia

Age: 66

She’s the wealthiest woman in The Peach State. Trudy is the only daughter of billionaire Samuel Truett Cathy who founded the Chick-fil-A chain of restaurants. Trudy together with her billionaire brothers Dan and Bubba Cathy now own Chick-fil-A after their father died in 2014.

Last year Trudy was ranked #200 on Forbes 400. She serves as an “ambassador” of the restaurant chain, his brother Dan is the chairman while Bubba is the senior vice president. In 2019, Chick-fil-A had $11.3 billion in sales making it the third-largest fast-food chain in the U.S. after McDonald’s ($40.4 billion) and Starbucks ($21.4 billion).

Related: The richest people in Texas

8. Dan Cathy

Net worth: $4.6 billion

Source of wealth: Chick-fil-A

Global rank: #622

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 69

With a fortune of $4.6 billion, Dan Cathy is one of the richest people in Georgia. Dan and his two siblings Bubba Cathy and Trudy Cathy own the Chick-fil-A American fast food restaurant chain that was founded by their late father. Dan serves as its chairman.

Chick-fil-A operates restaurants in 47 American states as well as other countries such as Canada, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. All the restaurant’s locations are normally closed on Sundays as well as on Christmas Day and Thanksgiving.

8. Bubba Cathy

bubba-cathy

Net worth: $4.6 billion

Source of wealth: Chick-fil-A

Global rank: #622

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 68

Bubba Cathy and his elder brother run Chick-fil-A, one of the largest fast-food restaurant chains in America. Chick-fil-A was founded by their father Samuel Truett Cathy in 1946. He died in 2014 at the age of 93. Bubba serves as senior vice president of the restaurant chain as well as the president of its related restaurant line Dwarf House.

Chick-fil-A, which specializes in chicken dishes and sandwiches has more than 2,700 restaurants in the United States. It is fully owned by the Cathy family. In 2019 the chain had more than $11 billion in revenues.

7. Dan Kurzius

Net worth: $5 billion

Source of wealth: Email marketing

Global rank: #552

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 50

Dan Kurzius co-founded Mailchimp, an email marketing software for small businesses in 2001 together with Ben Chestnut. Forbes estimates that both Chestnut and Kurzius are now worth $5 billion each after the acquisition of Mailchimp by Intuit for $12 billion last year.

The duo wholly owned the service which has more than 15 million users. They preferred to run it without any outside funding and turned down acquisition offers for 20 years. Dan and Ben worked together in 2001 on a number of projects when they launched the email marketing software as a side project. In 2019 Mailchimp had $700 million in revenues.

6. Ben Chestnut

ben-chestnut

Net worth: $5 billion

Source of wealth: Email marketing

Global rank: #552

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 47

Ben Chestnut has a fortune of $5 billion and is one of the richest people in Georgia. Chestnut founded email marketing software Mailchimp in 2001 alongside Dan Kurzius and Mark Armstrong. Mailchimp has more than 15 million users and had about $800 million in revenues in 2020.

In November 2021 Intuit, an American financial software company acquired Mailchimp in a deal worth about $12 billion. Ben and Dan owned a 50% stake in the email marketing software each.

Related: The richest people in Florida

5. Gary Rollins

Net worth: $5.3 billion

Source of wealth: Pest control

Global rank: #509

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 77

Gary sits at the helm of Rollins, Inc., North America’s largest pest control company by revenues. The $2 billion revenue firm — which began as a radio broadcasting company — was founded by Gary’s father and uncle in 1948. The billionaire and his family own about 55% of the pest control company which is worth about $8 billion. Some of its subsidiaries include Orkin, Western Pest Services, Crane, Home Team Pest Defense, and Clark Pest Control among many others.

4. John Brown

john-brown

Net worth: $5.4 billion

Source of wealth: Medical equipment

Global rank: #490

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 87

With a fortune of $5.4 billion, John Brown is one of the richest people in Georgia. The billionaire is the chairman emeritus of Stryker Corporation, one of the world’s leading medical technology firms. Stryker offers innovative products and services in neurotechnology, orthopedics as well as other medical specialties.

Brown also served as the CEO and president of the corporation from 1977 to 2004, a time when its revenues grew from $17 million to over $6.7 billion. He owns about 5% of the medical technology company.

3. Arthur Blank

Net worth: $7.1 billion

Source of wealth: Home Depot

Global rank: #336

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 79

Arthur Blank co-founded The Home Depot together with billionaire Bernard Marcus after being fired while working at Handy Dan. This year, the home improvement retailer is ranked #17 on the Fortune 500 rankings of the largest United States companies by total revenue. Blank retired as the company’s co-chairman in 2001.

The billionaire owns the Atlanta Falcons of the NFL which he acquired in 2002 for $545 million and Atlanta United FC of the MLS. The latter won the 2018 MLS Cup. The billionaire signed the Giving Pledge in 2012 thus committing himself to give away at least half of his wealth in the course of his lifetime. Home Depot is the largest home improvement retailer in the United States.

2. Jim Kennedy

jim-kennedy

Net worth: $7.8 billion

Source of wealth: Media, automotive

Global rank: #296

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 74

Jim Kennedy has been Georgia’s wealthiest man until this year when he was unseated by Home Depot co-founder Bernard Marcus. Jim is the chairman of Cox Enterprises, an automotive and media conglomerate based in Atlanta.

The company was founded by his grandfather, James M. Cox in 1898. Jim inherited his mother’s 25% stake in the $19.2 billion revenue company after her death in 2007. Cox Enterprises owns brands such as Autotrader, Savings.com, Kelley Blue Book, and Manheim among others.

Last year, Forbes named Cox Enterprises the 14th largest private company in the United States. Kennedy served as its CEO from 1988 to 2008 and increased its revenues from $1.8 billion to over $20 billion.

1. Bernard Marcus

bernard-marcus

Net worth: $8.7 billion

Source of wealth: Home Depot

Global rank: #241

Residence: Atlanta, Georgia

Age: 93

Bernard Marcus is the wealthiest individual in Georgia. Marcus, together with Arthur Blank, co-founded The Home Depot in 1978 when he was 50. Home Depot is the biggest home improvement retailer in America. The billionaire worked as CEO at Handy Dan, a Los Angeles-based home improvement company — where after being fired, he decided to start his own company.

In 2021 Home Depot had $151 billion in revenues. It operates across the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Bernard served as its first CEO from 1978 to 1997. He signed the Giving Pledge in 2010 and has donated more than $1 billion to various charitable causes.

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