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Who Are The World’s Richest Women?

Women are beginning to do well for themselves exceptionally, the era of being trapped behind men’s shadows seem to be behind as the fight for gender equality seems to prove fruitful. Women are continually climbing up the ladder of independence and financial freedom up to the coveted list of world’s billionaires.

An exceptional year for billionaires has significantly lifted the wealth of female merchants around the universe. A record of 227 women made the cut of the all-time high of 2043 people made the ranks of FORBES’ World’s Billionaires. This number of female billionaires marks a remarkable rise from the 202 female billionaires recorded last year. These powerful women take up an 11% chunk of the list and have an aggregated net worth of approximately $852.8 billion. While the majority of the richest women in the world may have inherited their money, it shouldn’t prevent them from being accorded the same respect as their fellow female billionaires. Below is a list of women who made the cut:

Liliane Bettencourt

France’s Liliane Bettencourt remains the world’s wealthiest woman (for the second time in two years consecutively) with a net worth of $39.5 billion. While this figure marks a $3.4 billion rise in the cosmetics heiress’ fortune from more than a year ago, she still dropped three spots from last year’s number 11 to secure a spot at number 14 on the list. Bettencourt is known to own a third of L’Oreal with her children. The company was founded in 1907 by her father, Eugene Schueller (who gave up the ghost in 1957. The 94-year-old mogul, who suffered from dementia, has been caught up in a legal battle against former photographer and confidant, Francois-Marie Banier. After he was found guilty of swindling Bettencourt In 2015, Banier was instructed by a French appeals court to pay a $400,000 fine and surrender $90 million in assets in 2016. Currently, Bettencourt is appealing the reduced damage payment while Banier is appealing the decision.

The Daughter of Walmart Founder- Alice Walton

The second person to make this list of the richest women in the world is none other than Alice Walton, who is worth roughly $33.8 billion, a $1.5 billion upsurge from last year’s estimate. She represents one of the four Walton women in the ranks, who, when their resources are pooled together, are worth a total $49.5 billion. The other three women are her sister-in-law (widow of her brother, John) Christy Walton, and her cousins, Nancy Walton Laurie and Anne Walter Kroenke. Although still maintaining her second richest woman title, slips a spot from last year’s rankings to camp at number 17 in 2017. The only daughter of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton, Alice is still yet to take an active role in the family business and owes her wealthiest woman in America status to her share of Wal-Mart stock and hefty dividends payments.

Rounding up the list of the world’s top 10 richest women is a collection of heiresses who may not be relatively well known but make their treasures from owning big and beloved brands. This includes:

*Granddaughter of Frank Mars who, in his kitchen, discovered the world’s largest candy maker, Mars Inc., in 1911, Jacqueline Mars who is worth $27 billion

*Maria Franca Fissolo, Late wife of Michele Ferrero, who built the Ferrero Group into a snacks powerhouse having brands like Tic Tacs, Ferrero Rocher, and Kinder Chocolate under its umbrella. Her father-in-law also created the spread that is now known as Nutella. Her estimated worth is $25.2 billion; and

*Laurene Powell Jobs, widow of Steve Jobs. Her $20 billion fortune is as a result of her shares in Apple and Disney.

Australia’s One-time Richest Woman Gina Rinehart

However, the woman who seemed to have the best year was Gina Rinehart. The iron ore magnate’s net worth skyrocketed from $6.2 billion to $15 billion thus making her take a big jump from her no. 127 spot last year to no. 69 in the world, and the richest person in her country. In contrast to the other women ahead of her, Rinehart can confidently brag about actively building her empire. The mogul took her late father’s bankrupted estate and reconstructed it into something much more productive. Her enormous Roy Hill project, a world-class iron ore mine in Western Australia, reportedly shipped 30 million tons of iron ore in its first 12 years and two months of production.

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