Top 10 Richest Bond Villains

ForYourEyesOnlyForYourEyesOnly In the untained cradle of the heavens
edited February 2016 in Trivia & Games Posts: 1,984
I recently saw a list from about last year where Forbes and other sites listed the wealthiest ten Bond villains as well as their approximate wealth. I was kind of surprised by some of the ordering, but I'd like to see who users on this board rank in their top ten, and obviously their reasons. Here's my list:

1. Hugo Drax - This one's obvious. Apart from owning a huge space station and a fleet of spacecraft, he has an exported French chateau and owns the Eiffel tower. He also had no problem funding science labs and tests for his toxin, and obviously had something that would allow him to switch rooms with the lab as well. He's probably a centibillionaire.

2. Auric Goldfinger - I believe the novel describes Goldfinger as the richest man in England. He's obviously rich enough to have numerous servants and the entire flight program run by Pussy Galore, on top of his very well-preserved 30's Rolls Royce Phantom. He was also capable of funding the entire Fort Knox operation. And, of course, he's got a lot of gold. Probably something of a multibillionaire as well, but still a far cry from Hugo Drax.

3. Karl Stromberg - Stromberg's clearly one of the richest Bond villains. He has all of Atlantis, the Liparus, a huge force of soldiers, could casually afford the surgery to repair Jaws' jaws (in the novelization of the movie), and could casually give away 20 million dollars to the professors at the start of the movie. He's also collected a huge array of underwater species, and likely has plenty of contraptions in his base that we didn't get to see. He clearly lives in sumptuous luxury too.

4. Elliot Carver - I refuse to believe that the leading media mogul in the world who has rights to just about everywhere except China would be anything short of a multibillionaire. The entire party scene shows how much wealth he has, and then there's the fact that he owns a stealth boat. Yeah, definitely a multibillionaire.

5. Max Zorin - Based on his colossal chateau, the fact that he basically funded the entire horse selling event, his airship, and the fact that he's one of the "leading industrialists" of the world, I think it's safe to say that Max Zorin is one of the wealthier Bond villains. Then there's the fact that he casually signed off that cheque to Sutton, which was five million dollars. His wealth is anywhere from hundreds of millions of dollars to several billions of dollars, from what I gather.

6. Franz Sanchez - Any drug lord of Sanchez's caliber almost certainly has hundreds of millions of dollars stashed away. Considering that the money he gave to Milton Krest was negligible to his funds, and the fact that he owned the meditation campus that his cocaine factory was located in, as well as the glimpse of the luxurious lifestyle that he leads, I think the film supports that claim. The fact that he more or less owns Isthmus (and its largest bank, casino etc) is also telling of his wealth. It seems his influence was limited to the Americas, particularly South America, which is the only reason for why he'd strike deals with all the Asian drug lords.

7. Ernst Stavro Blofeld - Blofeld's hard to rank because I measure his wealth separately from SPECTRE's, which means he doesn't own the volcano base in YOLT and so on. He did own the entire clinic in OHMSS, and I can only imagine the wealth he would've gained from posing as Willard Whyte for years in DAF. Then there's the fact that he could afford two clones of himself through plastic surgery and the oil platform base in DAF, as well as the satellite weapon (you can argue that this would be SPECTRE-funded, though).

8. Elektra King - I mention her because she's the heiress to a vast oil fortune and was capable of funding things like the chainsaw-helicopter attack, Renard's operation, etc. Her wealth is hard to determine but I find it unlikely that she isn't a multi-centi-millionaire.

9. Dr No - He basically owns Crab Key, and was obviously able to afford the decontamination equipment, the "dragon", a wide array of underwater species (one million dollars, which in the 60's, would've been preposterously high), the huge labs and nuclear-toppling technology, plenty of goons, and so on. We also knows he lives luxuriously based on the dining experience he had with Bond. It wouldn't be a stretch to label him a centimillionaire in my view.

10. Fransisco Scaramanga - Considering he's the world's most famous assassin and gets a million dollars per kill, he's likely a centimillionaire. He owns an island, a car that can turn into a plane, could afford his golden gun and a regular shipment of golden bullets, and he owns that solar lab on his island as well. And, of course, the funhouse. I don't think there's much of a difference between his wealth and Dr No's, so their places are interchangeable, IMO.

Comments

  • Yes those are good choices. I agree that Drax is the richest villain.
    I'm not sure if you are right about Blofeld in separating his stuff from SPECTRE's, I mean isn't he number one of SPECTRE anyway?

    And isn't Gustav Graves a rich villain as well? He had the ice palace and the Icarus satellite after all, I'd put him above Dr. No at least.

    I can't think of anyone else, but I do feel like Kamal Khan also has a feeling of wealth about him as well.
  • ForYourEyesOnlyForYourEyesOnly In the untained cradle of the heavens
    Posts: 1,984
    Yes those are good choices. I agree that Drax is the richest villain.
    I'm not sure if you are right about Blofeld in separating his stuff from SPECTRE's, I mean isn't he number one of SPECTRE anyway?

    Well, according to the novels, at least, SPECTRE's board divides its profits among its members. Given Blofeld's speech in Thunderball about SPECTRE being a dedicated fraternity whose strength lies in the integrity of its members, chances are that it's a similar system in the films.

    The problem is, of course, it's only until OHMSS that we see Blofeld's personal wealth. Before then, he resides in SPECTRE hideouts, and I don't believe he paid for all of them.
    And isn't Gustav Graves a rich villain as well? He had the ice palace and the Icarus satellite after all, I'd put him above Dr. No at least.

    True. I imagine he'd be pretty wealthy as Colonel Moon as well.
    I can't think of anyone else, but I do feel like Kamal Khan also has a feeling of wealth about him as well.

    Kananga and Kamal Khan are honorable mentions, and I think Largo also needs to be mentioned. Khan had his palace in OP but not too much else (he is an exiled prince after all). I can't remember where Alec Trevelyan found the funds for the GoldenEye satellite dish, or if that was even explained in the film.
  • What you say about Blofeld makes sense so I'll assume you are quite right.

    And regarding Khan, what about all the jewellery?
  • ForYourEyesOnlyForYourEyesOnly In the untained cradle of the heavens
    edited February 2016 Posts: 1,984
    And regarding Khan, what about all the jewellery?

    He's rich, I don't doubt that, but I think he's probably just a bit less wealthy than Scaramanga and Dr No. Scaramanga's "million dollar hits" were in 1974, so by modern numbers, he makes over 5 million dollars per kill. Dr No's "1 million dollar" aquatic tank in 1962 is the equivalent of almost 8 million dollars today. Those constitute very minimal fractions of their overall wealth, so I think they'd be centimillionaires by modern standards, something I think Kamal Khan is a bit shy of.

    If you have your own list, you can post it. Seeing as you mentioned Graves and Khan, I'd be interested to see how rich you think they are.
  • edited February 2016 Posts: 1,817
    I hadn't thought about inflation, but what you say is very true.

    Well, I can make a rough list on the spot right now, but it won't of course be nearly as deep or well-researched as yours, I'd just be going by gut feeling.

    Here goes...

    1. Drax: I agree completely, his wealth stretches reality even, in the Bond canon he is probably the richest person in the world for crying out loud)
    2. Blofeld: I'm afraid I don't use the books as a guide for this sort of thing so it is sort of obvious for me, given the wealth he demonstrates across his movies. But his wealth is definitely moot by FYEO.
    3. Graves: The Icarus satellite and ice palace are two things that couldn't even be made today, how much do you think they would've cost?
    4. Stromberg: only down one place, but what you say about the 20 million dollars I disagree with, he never actually intended to part with it.
    5. Goldfinger: I don't use the books as said, so I wouldn't necessarily say he is the 'richest man in England', he has Auric Industries; the farm and of course lots and lots of gold, but I'd say that the ones above are richer.
    6. Carver: Hmmm most of the stuff you say about him is supposition really but for the life of me I can't put him below 6.
    7. Zorin: I agree with everything you say, but he isn't among the top.
    8. Sanchez: I agree with everything you say, but he isn't among the top either.
    9. Scaramanga: If he gets a million dollars each time, then dayyaaaam! But then again, I'm pretty sure only the richest can afford him.
    10. Khan: Willing to bid as much as half a million pounds for just a Faberge egg when he needs to, then 200,000 rupees to Bond at backgammon, I mean really, he literally just throws money away, he has the whole Indian palace, has a plane, lots of goons, and then all of the jewellery he's smuggling, he's definitely very rich.
  • And if anyone wants a link to the Forbes article in question, which I just looked at: http://www.forbes.com/sites/abrambrown/2015/11/02/the-richest-james-bond-villains/#747a168c4496

    The list there was:
    1. Drax
    2. Goldfinger
    3. Zorin
    4. Carver
    5. Sanchez
    6. Blofeld
    7. Stromberg
    8. King
    9. Scaramanga
    10. Dr. No
  • SarkSark Guangdong, PRC
    Posts: 1,138
    Stromberg is the only one mentioned on film as one of the richest men in the world, right?
  • When?
  • SarkSark Guangdong, PRC
    Posts: 1,138
    "Karl Stromberg is one of the richest men in the world!"
    "One of the principal capitalist exploiters of the West, sir."
  • Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah that piece of dialogue eluded me.
  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    edited February 2016 Posts: 9,117
    Sark wrote: »
    "Karl Stromberg is one of the richest men in the world!"
    "One of the principal capitalist exploiters of the West, sir."

    Agreed.

    Stromberg second for me. Goldfinger just has a ranch in Kentucky, a factory in Switzerland and millions in gold bullion we never see (although owning a laser in those days is quite impressive).

    Stromberg has it all up there on the screen to see. Atlantis is a monumental engineering undertaking that would easily cost a billion. The largest oil tanker in the world (with its special modifications) would be another very expensive asset.

    Was going to count the tracking system as not being cheap to develop but as he never pays for it I guess we'll ignore that.

    Plus when he shows Bond the underwater city model and says 'soon a reality' are we to assume that this is already built or close to completion because you'll be lucky to get any construction companies to turn up in a post apocalyptic wasteland Karl.

  • SarkSark Guangdong, PRC
    edited February 2016 Posts: 1,138
    yeah, agreed. Don't see the argument for Scaramanga either To people like Stromberg and Drax $1million a hit is peanuts. Hell, Hai Fat was richer than Scaramanga.

    Perhaps we should look for real world equivalents for some of these people.

    Dr No owns a factory, not that impressive to billionaires. And since he's an agent of SPECTRE he may not actually own it himself.

    Largo (NSNA) should be on the list. I don't recall it mentioning his net worth, but he owned one of the largest yachts in the world, compared to which the original Largo's yacht was a dinghy.
  • edited February 2016 Posts: 4,844
    The Ice Palace can be and has been made before today :

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_hotel

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_palace

    It is, of course, temporary, but they do exist.
  • OK, @Gerard, you are right, but the ice palace in DAD was definitely permanent. And it still wouldn't be cheap to own one.
  • ForYourEyesOnlyForYourEyesOnly In the untained cradle of the heavens
    Posts: 1,984

    Stromberg second for me. Goldfinger just has a ranch in Kentucky, a factory in Switzerland and millions in gold bullion we never see (although owning a laser in those days is quite impressive).

    Stromberg has it all up there on the screen to see. Atlantis is a monumental engineering undertaking that would easily cost a billion. The largest oil tanker in the world (with its special modifications) would be another very expensive asset.

    Was going to count the tracking system as not being cheap to develop but as he never pays for it I guess we'll ignore that.

    Plus when he shows Bond the underwater city model and says 'soon a reality' are we to assume that this is already built or close to completion because you'll be lucky to get any construction companies to turn up in a post apocalyptic wasteland Karl.

    This is actually pretty convincing. However, it's worth noting that each million in 1964 would be 7.65 million dollars today.
    Sark wrote: »
    yeah, agreed. Don't see the argument for Scaramanga either To people like Stromberg and Drax $1million a hit is peanuts. Hell, Hai Fat was richer than Scaramanga.

    Maybe Graves or Kamal Khan should bump him off the list, then. Hmm...
  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    Posts: 9,117
    Sark wrote: »
    yeah, agreed. Don't see the argument for Scaramanga either To people like Stromberg and Drax $1million a hit is peanuts. Hell, Hai Fat was richer than Scaramanga.

    Quite.

    And realistically how many contracts would Scaramanga carry out per year? Say one a month and he's still on only about an F1 driver's salary.

    I'm sure an arms dealer like Whitaker doing deals with the Russians would think that amount peanuts also.
  • Posts: 4,844
    Let's not forget that, from the middle of the movie onwards, Scaramanga owns all of Hai Fat's fortune. And given that Nick Nack inherits all of that, at the end of the movie, we have a very wealthy dwarf indeed.
  • SarkSark Guangdong, PRC
    Posts: 1,138
    I know that Scaramanga proclaims himself the new chairman of the board. I'm no lawyer, but I don't think that is a) legally binding or b) means Scaramanga inherits everything he owns.

    Kamal certainly seemed rich. And Graves was the head of a diamond mining company. I can only assume he was extremely rich.
  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    Posts: 9,117
    Sark wrote: »
    I know that Scaramanga proclaims himself the new chairman of the board. I'm no lawyer, but I don't think that is a) legally binding or b) means Scaramanga inherits everything he owns.

    Kamal certainly seemed rich. And Graves was the head of a diamond mining company. I can only assume he was extremely rich.

    You're right about Scaramanga. I would think the other board members might vote to oust him, although I suppose he could just shoot all of them too.

    Isnt the whole point with Graves is there is no diamond mine? Otherwise why are his diamonds chemically identical to African conflict diamonds?

    The mine is just a front to legitimise illegal diamonds from Africa which he gets by selling arms to dubious characters like Mr Van Bierk isn't it?

    That said he's probably fairly minted and surely richer than Scaramanga.
  • MurdockMurdock Mr. 2000
    Posts: 16,099
    OK, @Gerard, you are right, but the ice palace in DAD was definitely permanent. And it still wouldn't be cheap to own one.
    What indicated that the Ice Palace was permanent? The mine was fake and the palace was just used to show off Icarus. Heck everyone was practically gone once Bond snuck around the mine area then Graves melted it to try and kill Jinx.
  • Murdock wrote: »
    OK, @Gerard, you are right, but the ice palace in DAD was definitely permanent. And it still wouldn't be cheap to own one.
    What indicated that the Ice Palace was permanent? The mine was fake and the palace was just used to show off Icarus. Heck everyone was practically gone once Bond snuck around the mine area then Graves melted it to try and kill Jinx.

    Daaaaam I think I've been proven wrong like three times over on this thread, yes you are right, and about the mine too. But he would still be in the top ten.
  • MurdockMurdock Mr. 2000
    Posts: 16,099
    Murdock wrote: »
    OK, @Gerard, you are right, but the ice palace in DAD was definitely permanent. And it still wouldn't be cheap to own one.
    What indicated that the Ice Palace was permanent? The mine was fake and the palace was just used to show off Icarus. Heck everyone was practically gone once Bond snuck around the mine area then Graves melted it to try and kill Jinx.

    Daaaaam I think I've been proven wrong like three times over on this thread, yes you are right, and about the mine too. But he would still be in the top ten.
    No doubt. That many diamonds can keep provide a healthy or unhealthy living for many years. :P
  • ForYourEyesOnlyForYourEyesOnly In the untained cradle of the heavens
    edited February 2016 Posts: 1,984
    Are any of the Craig villains comparable? I don't seem to recall any of them being overly wealthy. If I recall from QoS, Dominic Greene was quite wealthy but probably quite poor in comparison to most of the list.

    By the way, guys, this thread is for you guys to post your own lists, not just critique others.
  • Posts: 94
    What about Alec Trevelyan, he's fairly loaded isn't he? Although we all know the real wealthiest villain by some margin is one D.Trump. Now there's an idea for Bond 25!!!
  • yogi1 wrote: »
    What about Alec Trevelyan, he's fairly loaded isn't he? Although we all know the real wealthiest villain by some margin is one D.Trump. Now there's an idea for Bond 25!!!

    Taking over the world with "a small loan of a (b)illion dollars".
  • jake24jake24 Sitting at your desk, kissing your lover, eating supper with your familyModerator
    Posts: 10,568
    I'd imagine that ESB would be quite wealthy.
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