There are big bucks to be made in fashion and footwear — particularly for the six industry execs who made Forbes‘ list of America’s richest self-made women this year.
The publication released its annual ranking of the country’s highest-net-worth women who built their own fortunes, and cited several entrepreneurs and businesswomen from the retail world. Making the top 10 were Meg Whitman, who ran eBay for a decade and came in fourth with a net worth of $3.3 billion, and Doris Fisher, who started Gap in 1969 with her late husband, Don, and came in eighth at $2.8 billion. The 87-year-old worked as the company’s merchandiser for nearly four decades, stepping down from the board in 2009.
Forever 21 co-founder Jin Sook Chang earned the No. 13 spot with a net worth of $1.5 billion, an especially impressive figure when you consider she and husband Do Won Chang worked multiple jobs to make ends meet when they immigrated to the U.S. from Korea in 1981, opening their first store, Fashion 21, in Los Angeles in 1984.
Rounding out the pack are some of the biggest names in American fashion, including Tory Burch (net worth: $800 million), whose $5 billion fashion empire was, at least in its nascent years, built on logo-plated Reva ballet flats. Her 3-year-old activewear line, Tory Sport, is also getting a boost from its footwear offerings: Its ruffled sneakers are among its best-selling items. Vera Wang and Donna Karan, meanwhile, capped off the fashion mavens on the list at $630 million and $470 million, respectively.
According to Forbes, the richest self-made woman in America is Diane Hendricks, who owns ABC Supply, the largest wholesale distributor of roofing and siding in the country.
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