Executives The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World  

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15.7k votes 2.7k voters 137.1k views 38 items

NOTE: This list is just for CURRENT CEOs. It is not intended as an "All-Time Greatest CEOs" collection. Please only include executives currently holding the chief executive position in a company. In January of 2012, Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang resigned from the company’s board of directors and from all other positions with the company and in August of 2011, Apple founder and CEO Steve Jobs announced he would be resigning from his position (though he remained on board as an Apple employee and board member until his death). Though Jobs was replaced by the capable Tim Cook, this still sparked a lot of discussion about the fate of Apple after the loss of its long-time leader and chief innovator and the same can be said of Yahoo.

This list identifies the other Chief Executive Officers who are centrally important to their companies, and whose departure would lead to concerns about the fate of the business as a whole. They needn't be from the world of technology, either. Any CEOs of any major companies are eligible for consideration.

And because this is an Open List, add the names of any irreplaceable CEOs you think companies could not prosper without. They'll get added to the main list and then the Ranker community can vote on the Most Essential CEOs.

Check out more lists like Sexiest Female Leaders of 2014, Surreal Mark Zuckerberg Characteristics, Twitter Obsessed CEOs

1
378 163
Steve Jobs is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
voting closed at #2 toytrukn78 added Steve Jobs Died at 56 (1955-2011)

2
691 450
Warren Buffett is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Warren Buffett age 87 - Berkshire Hathaway

3
624 398
Elon Musk is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
ithinkshows added Elon Musk age 46 - SpaceX

4
696 719
Donald Trump is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
StephenSSkinner added Donald Trump age 71 - King of business and money making.

5
482 510
Larry Page is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Larry Page age 45 - Google

6
373 406
Jeff Bezos is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Jeff Bezos age 54 - Amazon

7
249 315
Larry Ellison is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Larry Ellison age 73 - Oracle

8
206 273
Reed Hastings is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Lon Harris added Reed Hastings age 57 - Netflix

9
275 386
Ralph Lauren is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Ralph Lauren age 78 - Polo Ralph Lauren

10
202 276
Steve Wynn is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Steve Wynn age 76 - Wynn Resorts

11
157 216
Clark Benson is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
mwahahahaha added Clark Benson Ranker.com

12
105 149
Mukesh Ambani is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
MUGESH added Mukesh Ambani age 60 - a great man with noble virtues....  

13
265 413
Howard Schultz is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Howard Schultz age 64 - Starbucks

14
75 106
Ranker Video
ralph-engstrom added Bill Chaaban CEN Biotech

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15
69 97
Satya Nadella is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Karan Gakhar added Satya Nadella age 51

16
146 228
Frederick W. Smith is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Frederick W. Smith age 73 - FedEx

17
117 188
Bob Iger is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
bburke30152 added Bob Iger age 67 - The Walt Disney Company

18
265 452
Mark Zuckerberg is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
MUGESH added Mark Zuckerberg age 33

19
131 217
James Sinegal is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Lon Harris added James Sinegal age 82 - Costco

20
124 213
Steve Ballmer is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
aair.surajj94 added Steve Ballmer age 62 - Microsoft

21
149 260
Rupert Murdoch is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Rupert Murdoch age 87 - News Corporation

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110 190
Blake W. Nordstrom is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Blake W. Nordstrom age 57 - Nordstrom

23
71 120
Lee Kun-hee is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
garybhatnagar added Lee Kun-hee age 76

24
98 169
William J. Lynch, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
William J. Lynch, Jr. age 47 - Barnes & Noble

25
9 10
Satoru Iwata is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
voting closed at #14 Joy215 added Satoru Iwata age 58

26
6 5
Arunansh Arya is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Arunansh Arya added Arunansh Arya

27
99 179
Jeffrey R. Immelt is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Jeffrey R. Immelt age 62 - General Electric

28
78 141
Tony Hsieh is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Randolph Strauss added Tony Hsieh age 44 - Zappos

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29
45 80
Christopher A Sinclair is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Alaina Hillman added Christopher A Sinclair Mattel

30
85 158
Leslie Moonves is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Leslie Moonves age 68 - CBS

31
63 118
Greggory Wasson is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
DocWheat added Greggory Wasson

32
54 102
Ivica Todorić is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
TomislavMarđetko added Ivica Todorić age 67 - Agrokor

33
90 171
Mike Jefferies is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
PeteBoyle added Mike Jefferies age 54 - Abercrombie and Fitch 

34
48 97
Ollen Bruton Smith is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
BabyMae1 added Ollen Bruton Smith

35
3 16
Caio Portella is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Caio Portella added Caio Portella

36
30 93
Brian Roberts is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
slaft added Brian Roberts Comcast

37
88 336
Tim Cook is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
Tim Cook age 57 - Apple

38
29 164
Marcus Lemonis is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Most Irreplaceable CEOs in the World
leperchuanangels added Marcus Lemonis age 44