Who Is The Richest Woman In Australia?
Gina Rinehart isn’t just the richest woman in Australia, she’s the richest Australian, full stop! As of August 2019, she has a net worth of $USD 14.7-billion ($AUD 21.8-billion).
Wealthy Women Of Australia: An Overview
Like most large economies, Australia pays particular attention to its wealthiest individuals. This is embodied in the Australian Financial Review’s ‘Rich List’, an annual compilation of the country’s 200 richest individuals and families. The Rich List together with Forbes Asia’s ‘Australia's 50 Richest’ list are our main sources of information about these wealthy people.
Around the world, we find that there are far fewer female billionaires than there are male billionaires. The same holds true for Australia – on Forbes’s 50 Richest, only seven out of the 50 entries are women. On AFR’s larger 200-entry list, only 22 are women.
The distribution of wealth is also influenced not only by sex, but also by geography. 64 of the top 200 richest people live in Sydney, and 59 in Melbourne.
The Wealthiest Women In Australia
With a staggering fortune of $USD 14.7-billion ($AUD 21.8-billion), 65-year-old Gina Rinehart easily takes our top spot as the richest lady in Australia. Gina topped both richest lists from 2011 to 2015, and in 2012 she had a total net worth of $AUD 29-billion, which was worth around $USD 28-billion at the time, making her the world’s richest woman during that year.
Gina’s fortune comes from iron ore mining through Hancock Prospecting, a massive mineral company founded by her father. Mrs Rinehart assumed the Chair of HPPL upon her father’s passing in 1992, and brought the then-languishing company to become one of the most powerful privately-owned businesses in Australia.
54-year-old Fiona Geminder comes in a distant second place with her 2018 $USD 1.9-billion ($AUD 2.8-billion) fortune, which comes from her family’s work in the paper industry – she owns a big chunk of Visy Asia-Pacific, one of the largest paper, packaging, and recycling companies in the world. She also dips her toes in the world of plastics through her 40% stake in Pact Group, which was founded by her husband Raphael.
Yet another mining magnate makes it to our list. 75-year-old Angela Bennett’s net worth of $USD 1.6-billion ($AUD 2.37-billion) comes from her leadership of Wright Prospecting, which she and her brother Michael inherited from her father Peter Wright. She also holds a stake in several mines around Australia, earning royalties from the iron ore that they produce. These sources of wealth combine to maintain her spot as the fourth-richest woman in Australia.
62-year-old Vicky Teoh migrated from Malaysia to Australia with her husband David in 1986, and together they founded telecommunications giant TPG, which today is the second-largest ISP in Australia. Together with her husband, she has a net worth of USD $1.5-billion ($AUD 2.2-billion).
Hardly any wealth comes without controversy. Our list-topper Gina Rinehart has been embroiled for years in a family conflict over the management of the $AUD 5-billion Hope Margaret Hancock Trust, established by her father in 1988. She had stewardship over the trust until her family filed a case against her, citing her bad conduct as sole trustee. She stepped down in 2013, and in 2015, her daughter, 42-year-old Bianca Rinehart was appointed as trustee.
Today, Bianca and her siblings are listed as #11 on the Forbes rich list with a combined net worth of $USD 3.1-billion ($AUD 4.6-billion). Bianca Rinehart herself has a net worth of about $USD 1.3-billion ($AUD 1.9-billion), and in 2017 was the second-richest woman in Australia.
Leonia Baldock and Alexandra Burt
In 2017, Alexandra Burt and Leonia Baldock they had a fortune of $USD 1.55-billion ($AUD 2.3-billion), which put them in fifth place on the Financial Review list.
While Nicole Kidman’s 2019 net worth of approximately $USD 130-million ($AUD 193-million) doesn’t quite put her in today’s richest lists, she made it to #97 on the 2017 AFR Rich List with an incredible $AUD 347-million fortune. She also continues to maintain her status as Australia’s richest entertainer, and one of the richest actresses in the world.
These rich and powerful women are living proof that the wage gap is being challenged at every income level. We look forward to seeing more of these remarkable women on future lists of richest Australians!
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