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Top 10 Most Richest Families in the World: Check Out Billionaire Families Across the Globe

Every day, fortunes are built and destroyed. Wealth is similar to a roller coaster, fluctuating with economic bubbles and crashes, strokes of genius or simple strokes of luck, and not always passing from one generation to the next. When it comes to the folks on this list, though, it appears that wealth simply flows in the family.

Al Saud Family – $1.4 Trillion

Most Richest Families in the World

Saudi Arabia’s ruling dynasty, the House of Saud, has ruled the oil-rich Middle Eastern kingdom for 250 years. They are so affluent that they have physically broken the meter, making it nearly difficult to measure their net worth (in part because there is a blurry line between personal assets and state property). Two prominent members, King Abdullah and Prince Alwaleed are among the world’s wealthiest billionaires, with respective fortunes of 20 and between 25 and 30 billion dollars.

Although it is impossible to determine how much each of the thousands of members of the royal family has amassed, the country still has oil reserves worth trillions of dollars. And since there is no obvious distinction between Saudi state property and Saudi royal property, well, you do the math!

Walton Family — $150 billion

Most Richest Families in the World

The Waltons are synonymous with very successful and wealthy families. Sam Walton has created a retail empire with Wal-Mart, and his family is now reaping the rewards. If they were a single individual, they would be by far the richest person in the world, with a net worth double that of Bill Gates, the current richest man in the world. Even after dividing the estate, each of Sam’s heirs ranks among the top 20 richest billionaires in the world.

Koch Brothers – $90 billion

Most Richest Families in the World

Charles and David Koch currently own the majority of Koch Industries, the second largest privately held firm in the United States. The corporation, founded in the 1920s by their father Fred Koch, who pioneered an ingenious method for refining crude oil into gasoline, is their primary source of wealth.

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The brothers have used their immense riches most prominently on the political stage, where they openly sponsor a variety of largely conservative causes, as well as numerous philanthropic causes (David Koch, a cancer survivor, has given hundreds of millions to cancer research).

Mars Family – $66 billion

Most Richest Families in the World

The Mars brothers (Jacqueline, John, and Forrest Jr.), members of one of America’s lesser-known wealthy families, are as private as they are adept at protecting and growing their inherited money. They jointly own Mars, Inc., the third-largest privately held corporation in the United States, which is best known for its confectionery products (such as M&M’s, Skittles, and the Mars bar), as well as other foods and pet food. The Mars brothers are so secretive that they not only do not grant interviews but also forbid images of them (except Jacqueline).

Quandt Family – $40 billion

Most Richest Families in the World

The vast majority of the Quandt family’s fortune derives from their joint ownership of over fifty percent of the German luxury vehicle manufacturer BMW. Johanna Quandt was married to Herbert Quandt, one of the company’s founder’s sons, who managed to turn BMW’s fortunes around during the turbulent 1950s. She divides the majority of the inheritance with Susanne Klatten and Stefan Quandt, their children.

Albrecht Family – $36 billion

Most Richest Families in the World

Karl and Theo Albrecht established the German bargain supermarket business, Aldi. In 1913, their mother opened a tiny store in their hometown of Essen, which the brothers eventually grew into one of the most successful enterprises in Germany and Europe. In 1960, the brothers divided the business and have since gone their separate ways.

Karl is currently the wealthiest individual in Germany and one of the five richest individuals in Europe. Since Theo died in 2010, his money has been inherited by his sons, of whom only Theo Jr. remains alive and operates the family business.

Bettencourt Family – $32 billion

Most Richest Families in the World

The Bettencourt family’s wealth is due to the cosmetics corporation L’Oreal. Liliane Bettencourt is the only daughter of the company’s founder, and by inheriting his fortune, she became the richest person in France and the third richest woman in the world.

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However, her wealth has not insulated her from controversy. Her husband was accused of cooperating with the Nazis during World War II, while her daughter attempted to seize control of her large fortune because she lacked the mental capacity to administer it.

Thomson Family – $26 billion for

Most Richest Families in the World

The majority of the wealth of Canada’s wealthiest family is invested in media companies, most notably Reuters. Roy Thomson began the Thomson family fortune in the early 1930s when he essentially constructed a media empire from nothing and gained the title of Baron for public service.

His grandkids currently hold the majority of his money, with David Thomson being the most prominent. The majority of family interests are made through the Toronto-based private holding firm Woodbridge Company.

Cargill Family – $23 billion

Most Richest Families in the World

The Cargill family owns 90% of Cargill, Inc., the largest privately held firm in the United States. Agriculture is the company’s most important line of business. The Cargills, like most of the other families on this list, began modestly around a century ago (in their case, William W. Cargill purchased a grain storage facility in Iowa following the American Civil War), and now the founder’s descendants jointly own one of the world’s largest corporations.

Dassault Family – $15 billion

Most Richest Families in the World

When Serge Dassault inherited his father’s money, he not only earned a big weapons manufacturing company, but also his father’s macho moniker, which translates to “war tank” in French (a name he preferred to his original Bloch). Today, Dassault Group is a massive conglomerate with operations in the aviation industry, aerospace equipment, the media, and even sports.

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Final Words

This list may appear to be a brazen celebration of money at a time when global inequality is increasing and the middle class is disappearing. It may also be seen as sanctioning careless consumption at a time when the very future of wealth is uncertain. In addition, the concentration on families precludes the inclusion of the three richest persons in the world.