There are now eight, billionaire women in Australia as reported by the annual Financial Review Rich List yesterday. It may sound like a huge figure, but this year 60 Aussie billionaires made the list – the highest number in the report’s 34-year history. If you can do quick maths, this means that just thirteen percent of the highest earners were female.
So, which unicorn women made the top five?
Unsurprisingly, Gina Rinehart came in #3 on the Rich List overall, with wealth of $10.41 billion– up from $6.06 billion the previous year. 2016, saw a huge rise in the price of Rinehart’s commodities and iron ore production.
Her estranged daughter Bianca Rinehart, who controls 23 per cent of Hancock Prospecting, (Rinehart’s company) was the second highest earning woman, (#15 overall) with a tidy little pay packet of $2.74 billion.
Vicky Teoh along with husband David, have amassed a combined fortune of $1.91 billion, as a result of their huge stake in rising telco, TPG.
Reclusive mining magnate, Angela Bennett took out fourth spot in the race to be Australia’s richest woman, with total wealth of $1.76 billion.
And, daughters of the late Perth mining billionaire Michael Wright, Alexandra Burt and Leonie Baldock came in at 5th place with total earnings of $1.55 billion.
An honourable mention goes to Nicole Kidman for emerging as the highest earning Australian entertainer. She currently sits on a fortune of $347 million. (Not bad for a girl who started out on Aussie TV soap, ‘A Country Practice’.)
Overall, property remains the dominant sector on this year’s list– with 58 of the highest earners making their fortunes this way. Many on the list who originally amassed their wealth in alternate sectors have since poured their proceeds into property development or business. Resources remained the highest earning industry for women.
While the combined wealth of Australia’s top five women was more than $18 billion this year, (indeed, no paltry sum) it’s worth noting that this was less than half of the combined earnings of their male counterparts, who sit on more than $46 billion.
It’s a frustrating statistic and another patent reminder that there’s still a long way to go when we’re talking about gender parity.