In recent news, large technology companies like Facebook, Apple and Amazon have dominated the headlines. In turn, the majority shareholders of these companies have been discussed as their wealth continues to grow. As Apple’s stock reached a point where its market value is over $1 trillion, some of the largest investors in the company, like Warren Buffett made a pretty penny. Likewise, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has seen his fortune skyrocket to nearly $156 billion, making him the richest person in the world. He was also the first to hit the $100 billion mark. Despite his immense wealth though, he is not part of the richest family in the world.
The Walton family controls a fortune equal to the wealth of the bottom 42 percent of Americans combined.
The Walton family possess a net worth of more than $174 billion, beating out Bezos by about $18 billion. The fortune is shared among seven members of the Walton family, the heirs to Walmart founder Sam Walton. Each of his three children, Alice, Jim and Rob, all have a respective net worth that places each of them in the top 20 richest Americans. In fact, the recent announcement of earnings by Walmart, which greatly exceeded expectations, sent shares of Walmart stock up 10 percent. In turn, the wealth of the siblings rose as well, to over $46 billion each. Most notably, the stock increase led Alice Walton to become the richest woman in the world, temporarily surpassing L’Oreal heiress Francoise Bettencourt Meyers.
In addition to exceeding both revenue and profit projections, Walmart’s extended online catalog showed growth and numbers pointed to a significant increase in its grocery business, despite competition with Amazon and its recent Whole Foods acquisition. Walmart announced that by the end of the year, 40 percent of the United States will be able to have groceries from their local Walmart store delivered. The service will be offered at more than 1,800 locations.
The biggest takeaway from the Walton family’s continued wealth growth is the stability of the company as a whole. Amazon has been growing and growing but the Walton fortune is still bigger. Despite the continuing push for e-commerce and competition from other large stores, the brick and mortar giant has stood firm and continued to successfully serve customers across the United States.