Top 100 Richest Bulgarians Summary – Updated May 18th 2020

2020 has seen 1 new entrant to the top 10 richest Bulgarians; Nikolay Banev (has been in top 10 before). There have been in total 8 new entries and dropouts from the top 100 in the 2020 list.

There has also been a major change in the top 2 richest, with Vasil Bozhkov being removed from the list after going on the run to the UAE after being wanted in Bulgaria for multiple criminal charges including tax evasion and running a criminal organization. Making Ignat Kaneff the richest Bulgarian and tech entrepreneur Vladimir Tenev the second richest.

The total net worth of the top 100 richest Bulgarians has seen a $2 billion increase from 2019 with the three biggest gainers being Georgi Zhechev ($387 million), Vladimir Tenev($226 million), Tseko Minev ($158.4 million) They gained $771.4 million between the three of them in 2020.

The three biggest losers, on the other hand, were Vasil Bozhkov ($1.6 billion) Tstvetan Vasilev($66 million), Darin Madzharov ($21 million) lost together in total $1.687 billion between them in net worth.

For the second year in a row there are no women in the top 10 richest Bulgarians. In total there are 11 women in this year’s Top 100 Richest Bulgarians list. The richest Bulgarian woman Vesela Kuleva is also the only person on the top 100 richest Bulgarians list who is not self-made with her wealth being inherited after the murder of her husband Emil Kulev in 2005.

Ignat Kaneff is the oldest in the list at the age of 94 years old with the youngest being Georgi Zhechev at 21 years old. The median age of the top 100 richest Bulgarians has fallen due to an increased amount of tech startup founders joining the list.

The total net worth of all the top 100 richest Bulgarians in 2020 is 15.761 billion which is the decrease of the $16.4 billion total net worth of the top 100 richest Bulgarians in 2019. This can be contributed mainly to the removal of Vasil Bozhkov from the list who had a net worth of $1.6 billion. In 2020 it estimated that the net worth of the average Bulgarian is $42,686 and the total net worth of all Bulgarians is $243 billion.

Bulgaria is a country that has just come out of a government-controlled Communist economy meaning all the billionaires and millionaires have become so in the past 30 years which means that the country has a higher than average amount of self-made individuals on this list than developed countries who were capitalist since the start of the 20th century. In the past couple of years, the median age of entries in the top 1000 and top 100 has been getting younger and younger as the new generation of entrepreneurs now get rich by creating tech startups and using the power of the internet allowing for a much faster accumulation of wealth and much more wealth to be accumulated at that. The economy of Bulgaria of steadily growing every year at between 2% and 4% on average, the wealth of the average Bulgarian is also steadily increasing with the falling population of the country due to low birth rates there is more wealth and government budget to go around for fewer people.

Additionally, we have updated our policy to no longer include individuals that are wanted by the Bulgarian government which removes Vasil Bozhkov and Tsvtetan Vasilev from this year’s list.

Net worth is calculated like this (value of known assets – any debts & liabilities)

Finally, condolences to the family of telivision producer and politician Georgi Ganchev who passed away suddenly at the age of 79, he was in the 84th position in the 2019 list.

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