Carlos Slim Helu and family – $73 billion
Carlos Slim Helu is the head of the richest family in the world. The family owns Grupo Financiero Inbursa, a financial company, and Grupo Carso, an industrial and retail firm. He also owns America Movil, a mobile phone company operating across Latin America and that has stakes in KPN of the Netherlands and Telekom Austria. The family also has interests in infrastructure, mining and real estate.
Liliane Bettencourt and family – $30 billion
The Bettencourt family inherited its fortune from the family patriarch who owned 30 percent of L’Oreal, a French cosmetic giant. While Liliane, at 90 years old, is currently the richest woman in the world, she has suffered from dementia, forcing her daughter and grandson to take action with the grandson Jean-Victor replacing Liliane in L’Oreal’s board.
Bernard Arnault and family – $29 billion
Bernard Arnault is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the luxury line Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, or LVMH. The family also has shares in Christian Dior. The Frenchman, however, has attracted controversy in the past years after he applied for citizenship in Belgium. A lot of people believed it was related to the high tax regime being proposed in his native France. Before the year ended, Arnault was also knighted in the United Kingdom.
Christy Walton and family – $28.2 billion
Christy Walton is the surviving wife of John Walton, one of the sons of Sam Walton, the co-founder of the massive Wal-Mart chain. After Sam died, his children took over with shares in the company. John, however, died in 2005 in an airplane crash, leaving behind Christy and one child. Christy and her family inherited John’s wealth, including dividends from Wal-Mart that amounted to $430 million in 2012 alone.
Michele Ferrero and family – $20.4 billion
After Pietro Ferrero died in the 1950′s, his entire chocolate business was taken over by his son Michele Ferrero. Michele was able to expand the business into one of the largest confectionery makers in the world, with products and brands that include Ferrero Rocher hazelnut chocolates, Nutella and Tic Tac. The Italian group has more than 70 affiliated companies and 15 production plants. It also employs about 22,000 people around the world. Giovanni is now the Chief Executive Officer of the entire Ferrero group.
David Thomson and family – $20.3 billion
The Thomson family has a private holding company called Woodbridge, which is controlled by David Thomson and his brother Peter. The family owns 55 percent of the media information company called Thomson Reuters. David chairs the board of this firm, as well as the Globe and Mail newspaper in Canada. The family also has shares in IHS, a company that deals with analytics, and Strategic Hotel and Resorts, a real estate investment trust company.
Thomas & Raymond Kwok and family – $20 billion
Thomas and Raymond Kwok are property tycoons from Hong Kong. They now control, along with their mother Kwong Siu-hing, Sun Hung Kai Properties, the dominant player in the country’s real estate industry. The family patriarch Kwok Tak-Seng, who passed away in 1990, founded the company. The two brothers, however, are currently involved in a $4 million corruption scandal that is awaiting trial.