Fortune & fame

Canada's wealthiest, and how they got that way.

The rich 100: 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002 | 2001

The rich list | Fortune & fame | Life in the fast lane | Arts patrons | Newcomers | Silver spoons | The invisibles

Chalk up a banner year for Canada's über-rich. The collective net worth of those who made it onto our exclusive Rich 100 list, now in its sixth year, is the highest it's ever been, at $130 billion. In fact, only 18 people on this year's ranking saw their wealth decrease .

The boost came in part from the boom in the technology sector, which helped catapult the boys from Research In Motion, Michael Lazaridis (up 215%) and James Balsillie (up 279%), into the billionaire ranks. And Canadian resource standbys, forestry and oil, significantly raised the net worth of Rich 100 members like Paramount Resources' Clay Riddell (up 99%) and lumber king Peter Grant Sr., who was off the list in 2003. Quebec-born chanteuse Celine Dion (No. 97 last year) did not make this year's cut, but those who like a little bit of star power to go along with our number crunching will be happy that Canadian actor Keanu Reeves squeaked in at No. 100.

As for methodology, researchers Alex Mlynek and Calvin Leung spent long days over several months studying proxies, insider trading reports and news clippings to estimate the worth of Canada's elite. For more on methodology, go to our website, at, and learn how we figured out how (much) the very rich are different from the rest of us.