2. Jeffrey P. Bezos
2. Jeffrey P. Bezos
Founder and CEO, Amazon

Amazon has had a blowout year, capped by the recent release of the Kindle Fire. Bezos stands out as an engaged, shareholder-friendly CEO (he owns 20% of the company but collects a small salary and no bonus). Amazon's international prospects seem bright given that more than half of all Internet users are now in developing markets. The company's cloud-computing division could also become very big. Potential downside: More cash-strapped U.S. states could force Amazon to collect sales taxes, which might reduce margins.


By Richard McGill Murphy, contributor - Last updated November 17 2011: 5:58 PM ET