Top 7 Wealthiest Families in The World: Almost every day, a stock sale hits the market: $99 million one day, $146 million the next, and nearly $294 million just last week.
The Waltons, the world’s wealthiest family, are represented by the distinct offerings, which are typically made by Goldman Sachs Group Inc.
They’ve sold $6 billion in Walmart Inc. stock in the last seven months, more than double the value of special incentives Walmart gave its 1.5 million U.S. employees last year for their contributions during Covid.
Despite this, it has barely made a dent in its assets. The Walton family still owns 1,334,480,250 shares in Walmart, both directly and through family trusts, and their fortune, which is mostly based on their position in the world’s largest retailer, has grown by $23 billion in the last year as the stock price has risen.
According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Walmart’s success has maintained the family from Arkansas — now in its third generation — wealthier than Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, our era’s two mega-billionaires, and about $100 billion ahead of the world’s second-richest dynasty, the Mars clan.
1. The Walton Family is the Richest Family in the World
- Industry: Retail
- Estimated worth: $238.2 billion
If you’ve ever bought a pair of socks at Walmart, you’ve contributed a small amount to the Walton family’s immense riches.
In the 1950s, Sam Walton opened a little “Walton’s 5-10” shop in the town square of Bentonville, Arkansas. The facade of the Walmart Museum, which charts Walton’s rise from small-town shopkeeper to the unchallenged king of American retail, is still visible.
Walmart has grown to the point where it now handles 50% of all grocery sales in some sections of the country, not to mention everything else they sell according to Walton’s “category killer” approach.
Walton was valued at $8.6 billion at the time of his death in 1992, a pittance compared to the present family fortune of $238 billion attributable to the globalization of the Walmart brand.
- Industry: Candy, other consumer goods
- Estimated worth: $141.9 billion
Milky Way, Twix, M&M’s, Snickers, and Mars Bars are all made by Mars Inc., which is named after the family whose great riches were earned on the backs of so much refined sugar.
According to Forbes, six members of the Mars family from Virginia are among the world’s 400 wealthiest people.
With America’s desire for candy unlikely to wane anytime soon, they will remain among the world’s wealthiest families for some time.
3. Koch Family
- Industry: Energy, manufacturing
- Estimated worth: $124.4 billion
All three of the world’s wealthiest families are American, with the Kochs of Kansas being the “hardest-up” of the bunch. David and Charles Koch elevated their father’s oil industry to new heights, with the family business now generating more than $115 billion in annual sales.
Julia Koch, David Koch’s widow, inherited $53 billion from her late husband, making her one of the world’s wealthiest women.
The Koch brothers were never bashful about using their wealth to sway politicians, openly donating ungodly sums to promote deregulation and other causes that were close to their hearts, namely, their drive to make more money.
- Industry: Consumer products
- Estimated worth: $111.6 billion
Fashion and luxury are an enormous business, as we just heard from the Wertheimers — yet not even the Chanel empire can stack its mile-high tower of cash as high as the Dumas family, who owns the ultra-chic fashion label Hermès.
Thierry Hermes started off in the 19th century creating equine gear for France’s nobles, and while the brand fared well, it might not have done so brilliantly if Hermes’ descendant Jean-Louis Dumas hadn’t brought Hermès to the world stage in the 1970s.
The family is still actively involved in the management of the 200-year-old design house, which generated 6.8 billion euros ($8 billion) in revenue in 2019. When the Dumas and Wertheimers run into each other at the caviar bar, there’s certain to be some awkward banter.
- Industry: Oil
- Estimated worth: $100 billion
Abdulaziz Al Saud founded the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 1932, and less than a century later, it is one of the world’s wealthiest countries because of, you guessed it, oil.
The royal family distributes the oil fortune among its members. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (or MBS) is a 35-year-old Saudi prince with a personal fortune of over $1 billion.
The Saudi royal family’s enormous riches have naturally led to some extravagant spending, including gold and diamond automobiles, golden toilets, and even a chartered trip for falcons. Falcons, to be precise.
- Industry: Consumer products
- Estimated worth: $93.7 billion
Oil is also called black gold for a reason. Just ask India’s Ambani family, who have amassed a fortune of over $80 billion as a result of striking it rich by mining the earth’s lifeblood.
Dhirubhai Ambani began his career as a gas station attendant, but instead of accepting his fate, he established Reliance Commercial Corporation. Mukesh Ambani, one of Ambani’s children, now runs the energy behemoth Reliance Industries.
When he’s not filling up reports, the younger Ambani relaxes at his 400,000-square-foot, 27-story palace, according to Business Insider. He’s had to get lost in there, right?
- Industry: Consumer products
- Estimated worth: $61.8 billion
It’s OK if you’ve never heard of Pierre Wertheimer, but perhaps you’ve heard of Coco Chanel?
During the interwar years, Parisian designer Chanel was attempting to build a name for herself in the fashion industry, and it was Wertheimer who took a chance and invested in her company.
Chanel died in 1971, but her name lives on because of the Wertheimer family’s hard work and dedication to protecting their cash cow.
Gerard and Alain Wertheimer, Wertheimer’s grandsons, are now in charge of Chanel, which made $12.3 billion in revenue in 2019.