Women have been leaving their mark in almost every field. When Forbes released its 2019 billionaires list, more than 200 women featured among the world’s richest people. Celebrity and entrepreneur Kylie Jenner became the youngest self-made billionaire in the world at just 21 years, beating the previous record of Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg who became a billionaire at the age of 23. Here we take a look at the top 10 wealthiest women in the world. Some of them acquired their wealth through inheritance while others built an empire of their own.
Ranked: Ten wealthiest women in the world
10- Kwong Siu-hing, $15.1 billion
Kwong Siu-hing controls the Sun Hung Kai Properties, the largest property developer in Hong Kong. She has a net worth of $15.1 billion, making her 78th richest person in the world. She is the widow of Sun Hung Kai Properties co-founder Kwok Tak-seng, who passed away in 1990.
9- Gina Rinehart, $15.4 billion
Gina Rinehart is the owner of the Australian mining giant Hancock Prospecting. The company was founded by Gina’s father Hancock. Gina Rinehart has a net worth of $15.4 billion, making her the richest person in Australia. When her father died, Gina took her father’s bankrupted estate and transformed it.
8- Iris Fontbona, $15.4 billion
Born in 1942, Iris Fontbona is a native of Chile. The billionaire businesswoman is the widow of Antonio Luksic Abaroa, who founded the Luksic Group and built his fortune through beverages and mining operations. Iris Fontbona is the richest person in Chile. She has also invested in brewery, energy infrastructure and some Croatian resorts.
7- Abigail Johnson, $15.6 billion
Abigail Johnson is the president and CEO of Fidelity Investments. Born in December 1961, she has a net wroth of $15.6 billion. Abigail Johnson is the 71st richest person in the world. Fidelity Investments was founded by her grandfather. She owns close to half of the US investment giant. Johnson began her career as a portfolio manager at Fidelity Investments.
6- Laurence Powell Jobs, $18.6 billon
Laurence Powell Jobs is the widow and heir to Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. Laurence inherited close to $20 billion from Steve Jobs when he died. She owns 38.5 million shares of Apple and an 8% stake in Disney. She is also an actively philanthropist.
5- Susanne Klatten, $21 billion
Susanne Klatteen owns close to 20% of German automobile giant BMW. Susanne is the daughter of Herbert Quandt and Johanna Quandt. She also controls the chemical manufacturer Altana.
4- Yang Huiyan $21.9 billion
Yang Huiyan is one of the wealthiest women in the world. She is leading a Chinese property developer called the Country Garden Holdings. Yang is a majority shareholder of the property development juggernaut. Born in 1981, she is the youngest of all the billionaires in this list. She had become the richest person in China at one point.
3- Jacqueline Mars, $23.9 billion
Jacqueline Mars owns about a third of the world’s largest candy maker company Mars. The company was founded by her grandfather Frank Mars. At one point last year, her net worth had swelled to $27 billion, though the ranking remained unchanged. Following the death of her father in 1999, Jacqueline and her brothers inherited the candymaker.
2- Alice Walton, $44.4 billion
Alice Louise Walton is the sole daughter of Sam Walton, the guy who founded Wal-mart. With a net worth of $44.4 billion, Walton is the 17th wealthiest person in the world. She doesn’t directly oversee the operations of Wal-mart. Despite that, she has received an equal share along with her brothers in their father’s death.
1- Francoise Bettencourt Meyers, $49.3 billion
Francoise Bettencourt Meyers is the world’s wealthiest woman with a net worth of $49.3 billion. The is the 14th richest person on the planet. She is the heiress and chairperson of L’Oreal, the cosmetics giant that also owns popular brands like Garnier and Lancome. Francoise inherited the wealth when her mother died in 2017. She owns about 33% of the world’s largest cosmetics company.