Bloomberg Billionaires Index

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# 484 John Brown $4.49B

Random fact: Stryker Corp. was founded by Dr Homer Stryker in 1941.


Brown is the chairman emeritus of Stryker Corp., a Michigan-based medical device manufacturer. Brown joined the company as chief executive in 1977, leading it through 2009 when he retired. In that period, Stryker revenues grew from $17 million to $6.7 billion. He owns about 5 percent of the company.

As of :
Last change -$173M ( -3.7%)
YTD change +$111M ( +2.5%)
Industry Technology
Biggest asset SYK US Equity
Citizenship United States
Age 85
Wealth Self-made
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

John Brown's net worth of $4.49B can buy ...

troy ounces of gold
barrels of crude oil

... and is equivalent to ...

of the GDP of the United States
of the total wealth of the 500 richest people in the world
of the top 100 U.S. college endowments
of the top 200 U.S. executives’ total awarded compensation
of U.S. existing home sales
times the median U.S. household income

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Net Worth Summary

Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

Brown's fortune is held in Stryker Corp. stock, which he acquired through awards and purchases in his 40 years with the company. He owns more than five percent of the business, a publicly traded medical device manufacturer, which had $13.6 billion in revenue in 2018, according to its 2019 proxy statement.

Brown also directly owns about 0.1 percent of Mid-Con Energy, according to the company's 2018 annual report, filed in March 2019.

The value of his cash investments is based on an analysis of dividends, taxes, charitable donations and market performance.

Jon Zimmer, a spokesman for Stryker Corp., declined to comment on Brown's net worth.


Birthdate: 9/15/1934
Family: Married, 2 children
Education: Auburn University, Southern Methodist University, Southern Methodist University

Brown was born in 1934 and raised in West Tennessee. The eldest of five children, he attended a junior college after graduating from high school and then transferred to Auburn University where he studied chemical engineering. After graduating, Brown began work at an aluminum company.

He was contacted by a recruiter from Stryker in 1976 and was offered the role to replace Lee Stryker, the company's president and chief executive officer who had recently died in a plane crash. Brown turned down the role at first, but soon after accepted and moved to Kalamazoo, Michigan to run Stryker.

Brown served as chief executive officer and president and then chairman of the board of Stryker Corp. for 32 years until 2009. He led the company's initial public offering in 1979.

  • 1953 Graduates from high school.
  • 1976 Becomes president and chief executive of Stryker.
  • 1979 Leads Stryker's initial public offering
  • 2010 Retires as chairman.