NET WORTH: $1.29 billion, unchanged
LAST YEAR: $1.29 billion
RESIDENCE: Bel Air
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Occidental Petroleum Corp., investments
THE MONEY: Net worth unchanged from 2014 as 18 percent drop in Occidental share price offset by substantial gains from personal investment portfolio.
BUZZ: Forced to watch from sidelines after being kicked off Occidental’s board in 2013 as successor Chief Executive Stephen Chazen began dismantling oil and gas empire Irani had built up over 20 years. Chazen moved Occidental to Houston and spun off California operations just as oil markets imploded. Irani joined Oxy in 1983 and succeeded legendary Armand Hammer as chief executive in 1990. Quickly stabilized oil giant’s shaky finances then used overseas connections to expand company’s reach; during tenure, Occidental’s market cap increased 15-fold to more than $80 billion. Despite this, forced to retire as chief executive in late 2011 after shareholder revolt over compensation package, reportedly more than $855 million between 2000 and 2009. Tried unsuccessfully to oust Chazen as chief executive following year. Since leaving Oxy, has used compensation and dividend payouts to expand personal investment portfolio now worth at least $600 million. Named in 2012 to chemistry faculty at USC, where he donated heavily and is trustee. Donated $20 million to university in March to endow residential college at USC Village now under construction. Born in Lebanon, moved to Los Angeles in 1953, received doctorate in chemistry from USC. Worked as researcher, amassing more than 150 patents – including glue that holds in place those “raised dots” on roadways – before joining corporate ranks. Has six children with wife, Ghada. Recently set up personal office in Century City.