India has 121 billionaires — 19 more than last year — making them the third largest group of the ultra-rich after those from the US and China, according to Forbes, the business magazine that produces an annual list.
From India, eight women have featured in this year’s Forbes list of the world’s richest people.
Forbes’ 2018 ‘World’s Billionaires’ list includes a total of 256 women — an all time high — and their collective net worth topped USD 1 trillion, up 20 per cent since last year.
Though most of the women at the top of the list inherited their fortunes, the number of self-made women reached 72 for the first time, up from 56 a year ago, Forbes said.
Among the Indian women on the list, Savitri Jindal and family is the richest with a fortune of USD 8.8 billion. She is ranked 176th globally.
Biocon chief Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw is the second richest Indian woman. She is India’s richest self-made woman and was ranked 629th on the list with a fortune of USD 3.6 billion.
“Biocon makes a range of generics to treat, among much else, autoimmune diseases, diabetes and cancer. The company is Asia’s largest insulin producer with a factory in Malaysia’s Johor region,” Forbes said.
Other Indian women on the list include Smita Crishna-Godrej at 822nd place with a net worth of USD 2.9 billion and Leena Tewari, who chairs the privately held USV India, at 1,020th rank with a fortune of USD 2.4 billion.
USV specialises in diabetic and cardiovascular drugs, with a portfolio that spans biosimilar drugs, injectables and active pharmaceutical ingredients.
Meanwhile, Vinod and Anil Rai Gupta were placed at the 1,103rd place with a fortune of USD 2.2 billion. “Mother and son Vinod and Anil Rai Gupta draw their fortune from a 43 per cent holding in flagship Havells India,” it said.
Anu Aga is the sixth richest Indian woman on the list, ranked 1,650th with a net worth of USD 1.4 billion.
Forbes said “after a two year hiatus, Anu Aga regained her billionaire status on a jump in shares of engineering firm Thermax, in which she owns 62 per cent”.
Sheela Gautam, who set up Sheela Foam in 1971, best known for its Sleepwell brand of mattresses, was ranked at the 1,999th place with a fortune of USD 1.1 billion, while newcomer Madhu Kapur, who got her fortune from a 9.3 per cent stake in Bombay Stock Exchange-listed Yes Bank too was ranked 1,999th with a net worth of USD 1.1 billion.
Globally, Alice Walton, the only daughter of Walmart founder Sam Walton, was the richest women billionaire with a net worth of USD 46 billion, while Francoise Bettencourt Meyers and family, who own 33 per cent of L’Oreal stock, was the second richest woman in the world with a fortune of USD 42.2 billion. She was ranked 18th on the global list.
Susanne Klatten, the richest woman in Germany, who owns 19.2 per cent of automaker BMW, is the third richest woman. With a fortune of USD 25 billion, she was ranked 32nd in the list with a fortune of USD 25 billion.
Mukesh Ambani, the energy and petrochemicals magnate, who keeps his standing as the richest Indian, is richer by $16.9 billion in 2018 with assets of $40.1 billion, according to the magazine’s list released online on Tuesday.
He moved up to the 19th global rank on the list of 2,208 billionaires worldwide compiled by Forbes. In 2017, he ranked 33rd with $23.2 billion.
The US has 585 billionaires and China 373 this year on the Forbes tally, which it calls “The Three Comma Club” for the punctuation used in writing out fully the billion in numbers.
In 2017, there were 102 Indians on the list.
Richest in the world
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is the world’s richest man with assets valued at $112 billion, overtaking Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates whose fortunes are valued at $90 billion and investor Warren Buffet with $84 billion.
In 2017, Gates ranked first globally with $86 billion, Buffet second with $75.6 billion and Bezos third with $72.8 billion.