Yes, Elon Musk Is Rich, And So Is Bill Gates: But Who Are The Wealthiest Women In The World?


The battle for “world’s richest person” is always fought between men, but as more women take on leadership and ownership roles in companies, the wealth gap between men and women is slowly closing.

The last decade saw several high-ranking businessmen tussle between first, second and third place on the world’s richest ladder, with Tesla, Inc CEO Elon Musk, LVMH-Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton CEO Bernard Arnault, Indian coal and energy tycoon Gautam Adani and former Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates all holding a top-three position at one point.

Although Arnault closed 2022 with the crown, many of the world’s richest men have seen their net worth plunge over the last year, in line with their company’s stock prices in some cases. So much so for one billionaire that on Jan. 10, Musk received a Guinness World Record for the largest drop in wealth over a single year.

In contrast, half of the top 10 richest women in 2022 saw their net worth increase from the year previous. Those whose fortunes didn’t rise saw their billions dwindle by less than many of the richest men.

So who are these wealthy women and how much are they worth? Below is a look at the top 10 richest women in the world, according to The Good Men Project.

  1. Francoise Bettencourt Meyers holds the title of the richest woman in the world, with a net worth of $74.8 billion. The granddaughter of the founder of cosmetics giant L’Oréal saw her wealth increase from $73.6 billion in 2021, despite the company’s stock price falling 10% over the course of last year.
  2. 73-year-old Alice Walton saw her 2022 net worth increase from $61.8 billion in 2021 to $65.3 billion last year. The daughter of Walmart, Inc WMT founder Sam Walton lost the first-place title to Bettencourt Meyers in 2021. The American multinational retail corporation fared well last year, losing just 1% compared to competitor Target Corporation TGT, which dropped 35% during the year.
  3. Julia Koch, who inherited a 42% stake in Koch Industries, is the third richest woman in the world, with a net worth of $60 billion. The widow of David Koch, who died in 2019, saw her wealth increase from $46.4 billion in 2021, causing Julia to rise from fourth to third place on the list.
  4. The fortune Jeff Bezos‘ ex-wife Mackenzie Scott dropped in 2022, partly due to her 25% stake in, Inc AMZN and the company’s poor performance. Scott’s net worth fell from $53 billion in 2021 to $43.6 billion last year, causing the philanthropist and author to slip from third to fourth place.
  5. The heiress of Mars Incorporated, Jacqueline Mars, is the fifth-richest woman in the world, with a net worth of $31.7 billion. Mars’ net worth rose moderately from $31.3 billion in 2021, indicating the private confectionary and pet food company was largely unaffected by soaring inflation.
  6. Gina Rinehart, an Australian cattle producer and executive chairman of iron-ore mining company, Hancock Prospecting, is the sixth wealthiest woman, with a net worth of $30.2 billion. Rinehart’s fortune increased from $23.6 billion in 2021.
  7. Miriam Adelson, whose net worth comes in at $27.5 billion, is a physician and the wife of Las Vegas Sands Corp LVS owner Sheldon Adelson until his death in 2021. Miriam dropped from the fifth spot in 2021 after losing over $10 billion of her fortune, likely due in part to Las Vegas Sands closing the year down 17.58%.
  8. German heiress Susanne Klatten is the eighth wealthiest women in the world, with a net worth of $24.3 billion, down from $27.7 billion in 2021. Klatten owns about 12% of BMW and is the richest woman in Germany.
  9. Iris Balbina Fontbona González, a Chilean businesswoman, owns a majority stake of Antofagasta PLC and Quiñenco, the former which she inherited from her late husband. The South American businesswoman’s net worth decreased from $23.3 billion in 2021 to $22.8 billion in 2022 but Balbina Fontbona González moved from No. 10 to No. 9 on the world’s richest women list.
  10. The chairwoman of Fidelity International and CEO of Fidelity Investments, Abigail Johnson, is the 10th richest woman in the world, despite her fortune sliding by almost $5 billion in 2021. Despite her fortune coming down from $26.1 billion in 2021 to $21.2 billion in 2022, Johnson didn’t make the top 10 list the year previous.

In terms of richest people in the world regardless of gender, no women make the list. The 10th richest person in the world is Alphabet co-founder Larry Page, whose net worth comes in at $83.7 billion. In 2022, Musk lost more than the top two richest women’s amassed fortunes combined, with his wealth plunging between $182 to $200 billion. Musk is now estimated to be worth $128 billion.

Miriam Adelson photo via Shutterstock.


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