Monday, February 7, 2011

The World’s richest women

The World’s richest women

The number of billionaires in the Forbes' list has hit a record four-digit figure: 1,125. The total net worth of the group is $4.4 trillion, up $900 billion from last year. Americans account for 42 per cent of the world's billionaires and 37 per cent of the total wealth.

The most famous billionaires are men. Little is known about the richest women in the world. So who are the world's superrich ladies? Read on . . .

1. Liliane Bettencourt

Liliane Bettencourt is the world's richest woman. With a wealth of $22.9 billion, she is the 17th richest person on earth, according to Forbes.

She is also the second richest person in France, after Bernard Arnault who has an estimated wealth of $26.0 billion.

Daughter of Eugene Schueller, the founder of L'Oreal, one of the world's leading cosmetics companies, Bettencourt has a controlling stake of 27 per cent in L'Oreal since four decades. In 1957, Bettencourt inherited the L'Oreal fortune from her father. He founded the Bettencourt Schueller Foundation, which awards the Liliane Bettencourt Prize for Life Sciences to a European researcher under the age of 45.

Bettencourt prefers to be away from public attention and devotes her time for the Bettencourt Schueller Foundation. Her mission is to help and support projects in the medical and humanitarian areas. About 60 per cent of the Foundation's budget helps in medical research.
Last edited by Rahul on Sun Mar 16, 2008 7:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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2. Christy Ruth Walton

Christy Ruth Walton, the wife of late John T Walton is the world's second richest woman. With a wealth of $19.2 billion, she is also the world's 26 richest person according to Forbes. John Thomas Walton was son of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton. After John's untimely demise in a plane crash in 2005, she inherited his fortune of $15.7 billion.

Wal-Mart is today the world's largest retailer, with 6,500 stores in 15 countries and 1.8 million employees.
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3. Alice Walton

Alice Louise Walton, the Wal-Mart heiress is the world's third richest woman. Daughter of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton and Helen Walton, she is the world's 29th richest person.

She has an estimated net worth of about $19 billion. Alice Walton graduated from Trinity University in San Antonio. Walton was the 20th largest individual contributor to 527 committees in the US presidential election in 2004.

She has also been in the news for the wrong reasons. In 1989, Alice Walton killed a 50-year-old lady in car accident in Arkansas. Although it was her speeding that led to the incident, no charges were filed in connection. In 1996, Walton was fined $925 for drunken driving.

An art lover, Alice Walton once paid $35 million for a painting, and then convinced Arkansas to grant her a $3 million tax exemption on the purchase.
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4. Jacqueline Mars

Jacqueline Badger Mars, daughter of Forrest Edward Mars, Sr., and granddaughter of Frank C. Mars, founder of the American candy company Mars Incorporated is the 4th richest woman in the world.

The 68-year old Jacqueline Mars with a wealth of $14 billion is the 46th richest person in the world.

The family is very protective of their privacy. They refuse to be interviewed, or photographed in public.

The Mars family is one of the richest in the US. The company was founded in Washington, in 1911, when Frank Clarence Mars and his wife Ethel started making and selling candy.

Today, Mars Incorporated offers confectionery, pet food and other food products. Mars is most famous for chocolates like Mars Bar, Milky Way, M&M's, Twix, Skittles and Snickers. Headquartered in McLean, Virginia, USA, the company is entirely owned by the Mars family. It is one of the largest privately owned US companies.

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