Liliane Bettencourt, the world’s richest woman and the heiress to the L’Oreal cosmetics brand, has died at the age of 94.
Bettencourt was born in Paris in 1922 and her father Eugene Schueller founded L’Oreal, one of the most recognizable brand names in the world. At the age of 15, she joined her father’s company and would spend her time labeling shampoo bottles and mixing cosmetics. In 1957, when her father died, Bettencourt inherited the company and became a principal shareholder. In recent years, her role at the company had become a passive one due to her dementia.
At the time of her death, she held a 33% stake in the company and had a net worth of $39.5 billion. In this year’s World’s Richest List, Forbes placed her at the 14th spot right below Google co-founder Sergey Brin and Larry Page. With a net worth of $39.5 billion, Lilian Bettencourt was richer than business magnates like Jack Ma, Steve Balmer, and Michael Dell.
Upon her death, Alice Walton, Walmart heiress, becomes the richest woman in the world with a net worth of $33.8 billion. Even though she does not work at Walmart, Alice Walton’s net worth comes from her shares in her family’s chain of retail stores. She is more of an Arts person herself and her personal art collection is said to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
Jacqueline Mars, with a net worth of $27 billion, now becomes the second richest woman. She is the granddaughter of Frank C. Mars – the founder of popular Chocolate company Mars. She worked at Mars for 20 years, served on its board until 2016, and now owns one-third of Mars.
[Image Source Telegraph, Forbes]