Ingvar Kamprad - Fortune - Billionaire list

Ingvar Kamprad
Ingvar Kamprad (born March 30, 1926) is an industrialist from Sweden. He founded IKEA, the home furnishing retail chain, in 1943.

$23.0 billion as of 2005.
$18.5 billion as of 2004.

How Ingvar Kamprad got Rich
He founded IKEA, the home furnishing retail chain, in 1943.

Ingvar began to develop a business as a young boy. He started by selling matches to neighbors from his bicycle. He found that he could buy matches in bulk very cheaply from Stockholm and sell them individually at a very low price but still make a good profit. From matches, he expanded to selling fish, Christmas tree decorations, seeds and later ball-point pens and pencils. When Ingvar was 17, his father gave him a gift for succeeding in his studies. The gift was used to establish his own business.

Ingvar has admitted his dyslexia played a large part in the inner workings of the company. For example, the acronym IKEA is made up of the initials of his name plus those of Elmtaryd, which is the family farm where he was born, and the nearby village of Agunnaryd, which is in the province of Smalandia. The Swedish sounding names of the furniture found at IKEA originally served as names chosen by Kamprad because he had difficulty remembering stock keeping units.

Kamprad has lived outside Lausanne in Switzerland since 1976.

In 1994 it was revealed that Kamprad had attended some pro-Nazi meetings in his youth. He has since said that this was a part of his life that he bitterly regrets, calling it the greatest mistake of his life. Kamprad is also a recovering alcoholic, which he also deeply apologizes for.