Melanie Perkins rises to second richest Australian woman on rich list

Melanie Perkins rises to second richest Australian woman on rich list

CEO and co-founder of Canva Melanie Perkins has rocketed to second spot on the Australian Financial Review’s Rich Women List, with an estimated fortune of $8.2 billion.

She comes in on the list behind iron ore magnate Gina Rinehart, who has an estimated fortune of $30.7 billion, and ahead of Angela Bennet who comes in at third position.

Fiona Geminder and Heloise Pratt, co-owners of packaging giant Visy Australia, round out the top five richest Australia women.

There are two new entrants to the AFR’s Rich Women List this year. Joan Essman, who is behind Versent, sits at number 46, and Sarina Russo, founder of employment services company Sarina Russo Group, joins in 50th place.

Other notable members of the 50 richest Australian women are Chair of Tesla Robyn Denholm, owner of Sportsgirl Naomi Milgrom, owner of Costa Group Shirley Costa, actress Nicole Kidman, co-founder of Envato Cyan Ta-eed, and Mecca cosmetics founder, Jo Horgan.

Melanie Perkins, CEO and co-founder of Canva, last year announced she would be giving significant percentage of her fortune away to charitable causes, alongside her co-founder Cliff Obrecht.

In their “Giving Pledge” letter, Perkins and Obrecht wrote that they had a two step plan for Canva that included making it one of the world’s most valuable companies, and to do the most good they could do.

“We have this wildly optimistic belief that there is enough money, goodwill, and good intentions in the world to solve most of the world’s problems. We feel like it’s not just a massive opportunity, but an important responsibility and we want to spend our lifetime working towards that,” they wrote.

Last month, Canva announced a two-week drive to raise money for relief for the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, donating an initial $250,000.

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