Female billionaires are nothing new, but they are often overshadowed by their male equivalents. To highlight the careers of these women, Forbes has put together a Power Women list. In the latest list, 13 of the women boast fortunes that meet or exceed $1 billion.
According to Forbes, 10 of the 13 female billionaires on its list are self-made. In other words, these women didn’t receive an inheritance or a handout to obtain their fortune. Rather, these women worked their way into fortune in various fields, such as finance, fashion, entertainment or tech.
Starting with the most recognizable female billionaire is Oprah Winfrey. The only African-American woman on the list is worth $3 billion and is credited with turning the Oprah Winfrey Network from a money sink into a money maker.
Another notable entry on the list is newcomer Sheryl Sandberg. The Facebook COO and former Google Vice President of Global Online Sales and Operations, she’s also the author of Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead. As such, she’s an outspoken advocate of women in the workplace and their importance from the lower rungs all the way up to the executive positions.
Sandberg isn’t the only tech-related female billionaire around as Meg Whitman, CEO of HP, made the list with a net fortune of $2 billion. Even though the company has seen better days, HP reported positive earnings in its last fiscal year. It’s a positive sign that Whitman may yet be able to turn the ship around in a declining PC market.
Two Asian women made the list with Wu Yajun and Zhang Xin from China. The former owns a real-estate empire while the latter is the co-founder of Soho. Both are powerful women in China and the world.
Fashion played a large role in the fortunes of three female billionaires on the list – Miuccia Prada, Tory Burch and Sara Blakely. All three women have built their empires on fashion with the latter being the youngest self-made female billionaire thanks to her line of Spanx clothing.
Some of the women on the list are not self-made billionaires, but they are no less powerful for it. Gina Rinehart inherited her father’s mining operation in Australia and is now the richest person in the country. Her wealth is likely to expand even more thanks to her decision to expand into gas and oil.
The above are just the female billionaires that make up Forbes’ list of the 100 most powerful women in the world. In fact, the most powerful women in the world, as far as Forbes is concerned, isn’t even a millionaire. Angela Merkel, Germany’s chancellor, took the top spot on Forbes’ list. You can check out the full list here.
Image via Wikimedia Commons