Here Are the Richest Women in the World in 2022
For the world’s 10 wealthiest women, it’s all in the family. Each owes their fortunes to inheritance or divorce but have worked hard to either lead and grow the family business or focus on philanthropy. Six of them live in the United States, with the other four scattered across three continents.
Each of the women are among the 100 richest people in the world, according to Forbes’ 2022 list. And their industries are diverse, from cosmetics to retail to autos to mining and more. Check out these women who boast the most.
Iris Fontbana and Family: $18.1 Billion
A resident of Chile, Iris Fontbana and her sons inherited their wealth from her husband and their father, Andrónico Luksic, who died of cancer in 2005. The family fortune is based on the mining, banking and beverage industries.
Fontbana and her two surviving sons – a third died of lung cancer nearly 10 years ago – operate Antofagasta Plc, a Chilean copper mining conglomerate that trades on the London Stock Exchange. According to Forbes, son Jean-Paul Luksic chairs that company, while his brother, Andrónico Luksic, leads Quiñenco, a beer, banking and manufacturing conglomerate.
Abigail Johnson: $20.5 Billion
The CEO and chairperson of Fidelity Investments, Abigail Johnson took over the executive role from her father in 2014. Her grandfather founded the financial firm in Boston in 1946. She earned an MBA from Harvard, worked summers at the family company and became an analyst there in 1988. She owns a 24.5% stake in Fidelity, which has managed assets of $4.2 trillion, Forbes reported.
Johnson has taken a nontraditional approach at the helm of Fidelity, launching new products targeting millennials and embracing socially responsible investing and cryptocurrencies. She is married to healthcare entrepreneur Christopher McKown.
Susanne Klatten: $22.3 Billion
Susanne Klatten put her background as an economist to work to help her grandfather build his Altana AG into a top pharmaceutical and specialty company. Forbes reported she is now the German company’s sole owner, which boasts annual sales in excess of $2.5 billion.
She has a second company in her portfolio, too: BMW. According to Forbes, her brother, Stefan Quandt, has a stake in the company of nearly 24% and she holds about 19% of the luxury automaker. Their father, late industrialist Herbert Quandt, led BNW to its place of prominence in the auto industry.
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Miriam Adelson: $27.5 Billion
Miriam Adelson owns more than half of the casino company Las Vegas Sands, with casinos in Macao and Singapore. She gained that stake upon the death of her husband, Sheldon Adelson, who was the CEO and chairman of the company until his death in January 2021 at age 87. Las Vegas Sands sold its assets in the Nevada city for $6.25 billion in early 2022, holding on to its foreign properties, Forbes reported.
Adelson now makes her home in Las Vegas, but she grew up in Israel and worked as a doctor, specializing in addiction. Known philanthropists, the couple founded the Dr. Miriam and Sheldon G. Adelson Research Clinic in Las Vegas, where people struggling with opioid use can receive treatment.
Gina Rinehart: $28.5 Billion
Australian Gina Rinehart took her late father’s company, Hancock Prospecting, and turned around the financially struggling business. She became the company’s executive chairwoman in 1992 and now oversees a money-making company that counts the Roy Hill mining project as its largest asset. Rinehart also is Australia’s second-largest cattle producer, Forbes reported.
Rinehart is Australia’s richest person and largest landholder, The Guardian reported.
Jacqueline Mars: $33.1 Billion
Jacqueline Mars is the granddaughter of Frank Mars, founder of the Mars candy company. Jacqueline owns an estimated one-third of the company, along with her brother, John, and the four daughters of her late brother, Forrest Jr.
Jacqueline served on the board of Mars until 2016 and worked for the company for 20 years. She has focused much of her attention on the work of the Mars Foundation, the candy maker’s philanthropic arm. She owns a horse farm in Virginia.
MacKenzie Scott: $39.7 Billion
After 25 years of marriage to the world’s richest man — Amazon founder Jeff Bezos — MacKenzie Scott came into her own tens of billions of dollars as part of the couple’s divorce settlement in 2019.
Soon after, she famously vowed to give away the majority of her wealth as part of the Giving Pledge, a movement of philanthropists committing to giving back to charitable causes. In 2020 and 2021, she gave more than a combined $8.5 billion to hundreds of diverse charitable organizations.
In August, she donated two single-family residences in Beverly Hills, California, to the California Community Foundation. The properties are valued at $55 million. The Foundation intends to sell them and use 90% of the proceeds to make grants for affordable housing, and the rest to support its immigrant integration program.
Julia Koch and Family: $57.9 Billion
The widow of billionaire industrialist David Koch, Julia Koch, and her three children inherited a 42% stake in Koch Industries following his 2019 death. The private company works in diverse industries.
Julia was born in Iowa and her parents later owned a women’s clothing boutique in the town of Conway, Arkansas. She moved to New York in the 1980s to model and became an assistant to the designer Adolfo, dressing the likes of Nancy Reagan.
She now leads the David H. Koch Foundation, which supports education, the arts, and medical research, including a $10 million donation to allergy and asthma research at the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford.
Alice Walton: $56.5 Billion
The only daughter of Walmart founder Sam Walton, Alice Walton did not follow the path into the family business of her brothers, Rob and Jim Walton. Alice Walton focused her early career on investing, working as an analyst and broker, then founded her own investment bank, Llama Company. It closed in the late 1990s.
She also pursued interests in art, founding the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. She opened a sliding-scale Christian summer camp called Camp War Eagle in 2006. Three years ago, Alice announced the launch of her Whole Health Institute in Bentonville, with a mission of changing the nation’s approach to healthcare to focus on goal-based wellness rather than sickness.
Francoise Bettencourt Meyers and Family: $71.1 Billion
Francoise Bettencourt Meyers of France is the richest woman in the world, ranked No. 14 on Forbes’ list of billionaires. Since 1997, she has been a member of the board of directors of L’Oreal, the beauty giant founded by her grandfather Eugene Schuller, a young chemist who started selling his hair dye to hairdressers in Paris in 1909. Bettencourt Meyers and her family own about 33% of L’Oreal stock, Forbes reported, and she also is chairwoman of the family holding company.
She is the founder and president of the Fondation[CQ] Bettencourt Schuller, a foundation that focuses on life sciences, the arts and promoting an inclusive society.
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Methodology: For this piece, GOBankingRates used Forbes “Real-Time Billionaire” tracker data to find the 10 richest women in the world. For each figure GOBankingRates found (1) their name; (2) age; (3) net worth as of Aug. 24, 2022; (4) source of wealth; and (5) country/territory of residence. All data was collected on and is up to date as of Aug. 24, 2022.