ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) - Two Turkey-born Kurds, Hamdi Ulukaya and Nihat Ozdemir are among the world's richest billionaires in 2017 according to the American business magazine Forbes which lists top magnets of wealth every year.
With a net fortune of 1.7 billion dollars, the US-based yogurt mogul Ulukaya was listed as the 1234th richest person in the world, making him also the wealthiest Kurd.
Ozdemir, the other Kurdish businessman who made it to the list that included 2,043 people from around the globe, is the owner of the Turkish construction and energy Limak Holding.
Hailing from the de facto Kurdish capital of Diyarbakir in Turkey, Ozdemir ranked 1,290 among the most affluent with 1.6 billion US dollars.
[Nihat Ozdemir, Photo: DHA]
Until his resignation in 2011, Ozdemir was also the second president and a long-time board member of one of Turkey's biggest sports clubs, Fenerbahce.
Entrepreneur Ulukaya who revolutionized yogurt consumption in the US was born in 1972 to a semi-nomadic family in Erzincan province in Turkey's Kurdish region, according to a 2013 interview with the New Yorker magazine.
Known for his philanthropy, Ulukaya donated two million dollars to refugees in 2014 when hundreds of thousands fled an Islamic State assault on the town of Kobani in Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava).
In 2016, the Chobani CEO gave ten percent of the company he founded in 2005 to its two thousand employees with some long-term workers receiving the stock value of up to one million dollars.
The world's richest person continued to be Microsoft's Bill Gates with an estimated net worth of 86 billion dollars.
Gates has been in the position for 18 out of the past 23 years.
Other billionaires in the top ten included social media giant Facebook's founder Mark Zuckerberg, the Mexican investor Carlos Slim Helu and the Spanish tycoon Amancio Ortega.
Editing by Ava Homa