DEFINITION of 'Mogul'

A mogul is a person who dominates an enterprise or industry. Mark Zuckerberg became a mogul when his social media creation, Facebook, became the dominant global online social network. Jack Welch is considered a mogul for his success as former chairman and CEO of General Electric Company, one of the world's largest conglomerates. Mogul Henry Ford revolutionized the automobile industry with his assembly-line production method and the Model-T car.

BREAKING DOWN 'Mogul'

Many business moguls are household names, but this kind of fame is not necessary to be considered a mogul. Such individuals possess innovative ideas, a willingness to take risks and the keen business sense it takes to make their ideas possible and their risks profitable. Moguls might also be called business magnates, barons, tycoons or captains of industry, while the term media mogul is often applied to a person who dominates or controls a large media enterprise. Prominent examples of media moguls include Oprah Winfrey and Steve Forbes.

Historical Moguls

The term mogul is often used when referring to major historical figures who were business magnates during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, such as Andrew Carnegie in the U.S. steel industry; John D. Rockefeller in the oil industry; J.P. Morgan in the banking industry; and Cornelius Vanderbilt in the shipping and railroad industries. Other historic figures who are often called moguls include Henry Ford for automobiles, Aristotle Onassis for shipping and William Randolph Hearst for publishing. In contemporary times, well-known moguls include Donald Trump for real estate; Sir Richard Branson for airlines and telecommunications; Jay Z for media and the music industry; and Warren Buffet for business and finance.

Mogul Influence

Moguls commonly exercise a great deal of influence in the political, economic and social spheres, often providing large sums of money to political candidates, new business ventures and charitable causes. Warren Buffet, through Berkshire-Hathaway, has invested enormous sums of capital in a wide swath of businesses in industries from insurance to restaurants; exerted a high degree of influence in U.S. political affairs; and donated billions of dollars to charitable causes. Bill Gates, the founder and former CEO of Microsoft, along with his wife Melinda Gates, has been a powerful charitable force in Africa and other regions. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has spent billions of dollars to eradicate contagious diseases such as polio with extensive vaccination programs.

Elon Musk, a South-African born Canadian-American billionaire, has effected a somewhat unique influence by focusing his efforts on major innovations most others find too risky or pie-in-the-sky, such as the proposed Hyperloop transportation system, VTOL supersonic jet aircraft and the Musk electric jet. In 2004, he became the chairman of Tesla Motors, an innovative manufacturer of electric-powered automobiles. In 2014, Musk stated that anyone acting in good faith could use Tesla's technology to speed up the use and adoption of electric cars.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Philanthropy

    Philanthropy is charitable giving to human causes on a large ...
  2. Tycoon

    A tycoon is a prominent figure in a particular industry who has ...
  3. Social Good

    A social good is an act that benefits the largest number of people ...
  4. Social Media Optimization (SMO)

    Social media optimization (SMO) is the use of social media networks ...
  5. Robber Barons

    A robber baron is a term sometimes attributed to any successful ...
  6. Social Sentiment Indicator

    A social sentiment indicator analyzes aggregated social media ...
Related Articles
  1. Investing

    Icahn to Sell Federal Mogul for $5.4 Billion

    The activist investor is selling the auto parts maker to Tenneco.
  2. Investing

    Elon Musk Buys Almost $10M in Tesla Stock

    Musk bought 33,000 shares in the company he founded shortly after taunting investors for betting against the stock.
  3. Managing Wealth

    Top 9 States With The Most Billionaires

    Have you ever wondered where in the United States the billionaires are living? You might be surprised at the answers.
  4. Small Business

    Top 5 Most Successful American Entrepreneurs

    Understand what makes America a breeding ground for entrepreneurs. Learn about five of the most successful American entrepreneurs of all time.
  5. Insights

    Elon Musk Biography

    A look at the life of Elon Musk, one of the most eccentric and brilliant entrepreneurs of our day.
  6. Managing Wealth

    The Christmas Saints Of Wall Street

    Learn how some of world's richest people spread holiday cheer year-round.
  7. Investing

    Membership Growth Drove Weight Watchers' Strong Q4

    Weight Watchers (NYSE: WTW) shares have been on a bit of yo-yo diet since October 2015, when Oprah Winfrey bought a stake in the company. The stock became fairly volatile, with some investors ...
  8. Managing Wealth

    A Look at the 5 Richest People in the World

    Forbes magazine just revealed its 2018 list of billionaires. Who made the top five?
RELATED FAQS
  1. Who owns Dow Jones & Company?

    Learn how the purchase of Dow Jones & Company by News Corp. included the acquisition of The Wall Street Journal, Barron's ... Read Answer >>
  2. What's the best way to contact Warren Buffett?

    Learn how to contact Warren Buffett and what kinds of contact is most likely to receive a response from him or from his company, ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Inflation

    Inflation is the rate at which prices for goods and services is rising and the worth of currency is dropping.
  2. Discount Rate

    Discount rate is the interest rate charged to commercial banks and other depository institutions for loans received from ...
  3. Economies of Scale

    Economies of scale refer to reduced costs per unit that arise from increased total output of a product. For example, a larger ...
  4. Quick Ratio

    The quick ratio measures a company’s ability to meet its short-term obligations with its most liquid assets.
  5. Leverage

    Leverage results from using borrowed capital as a source of funding when investing to expand the firm's asset base and generate ...
  6. Financial Risk

    Financial risk is the possibility that shareholders will lose money when investing in a company if its cash flow fails to ...
Trading Center