liliane bettencourt

Liliane Bettencourt, daughter of Eugene Schueller, the man who founded cosmetics giant L’Oréal, tops Forbes’ just-released list of the richest women in Europe with a fortune of $22.9 billion.

That also makes her the world’s richest woman and the 17th richest person on earth, according to Forbes. She is also the second richest person in France, after Bernard Arnault who has an estimated wealth of $26.0 billion.

Following Bettencourt on Europe’s female rich list is a Swedish citizen Birgit Rausing, a packaging heiress with an estimated fortune of $14 billion, while No. 3 is BMW and pharmaceuticals heiress Susanne Klatten, with $13.2 billion.

Self-made women are rare on this list : Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling worth to be $1 billion, which ties as the smallest fortune possessed by the 22 billionaire women with European citizenship, a group with a total net worth of $112.8 billion.