25 most powerful people in business

Some are empire builders. Others are hired guns. But if they truly have world-class oomph, they're on Fortune's subjective - yet really quite accurate - list of the most powerful businesspeople in the world.

Warren Buffett
5. Warren Buffett
Chairman and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway

Of course it matters that Buffett has built Berkshire Hathaway into a massive holding company with interests ranging from underwear to private jets (2006 revenues: $98 billion). Of course it's impressive that since 1965, Berkshire has performed more than twice as well as the S&P 500. Of course it's amazing that Buffett has made millions from something as toxic as Enron bonds. And of course it is somehow unsurprising that he managed to help broker a deal between A-Rod and the New York Yankees.

But the source of Buffett's influence is found in his nickname: the "Sage of Omaha." CEOs - and athletes, obviously, including LeBron James - venture to Nebraska to consult him. And people everywhere listen to his pronouncements on things like managed earnings (against), stock option expensing (for), and the U.S. dollar (pessimistic).
--Cait Murphy

Steve Jobs

Rupert Murdoch

Lloyd Blankfein

Eric Schmidt, Larry Page, and Sergei Brin

Warren Buffett

Rex Tillerson

Bill Gates

Jeff Immelt

Katsuaki Watanabe

A.G. Lafley

John Chambers

Li Ka-shing

Lee Scott

Lakshmi Mittal

Jamie Dimon

Mark Hurd

James McNerney

Marius Kloppers

Steve Schwarzman

Carlos Slim

Steve Feinberg

Indra Nooyi

Ratan Tata

Bob Iger

Bernard Arnault
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