The heirs of Walmart founder Sam Walton together are considerably wealthier, thanks in part to a stock bump after Walmart’s latest quarterly earnings report.
Seven members of the Walton family possess a fortune worth about $174 billion, compared to Bezos’ $155.8 billion net worth as of 1 p.m. eastern on Thursday.
The fact that the Walton fortune dwarfs Bezos’ says something about the enduring nature of Walmart. Even in the era of e-commerce, Walmart reported earnings that Wall Street loved, sending the company’s stock up nearly 10% as of 1:15 p.m. That uptick in shares boosted the Waltons’ collective fortune by $13 billion on Thursday.
The strong earnings also helped Alice Walton, the only daughter of Sam Walton, reclaim her title as the richest woman in the world, worth $68 billion, beating out L’Oréal heiress Francoise Bettencourt Meyers. She and her brothers Jim, 70 (net worth: $46.4 billion) and Rob, 73 ($46.2 billion), rank among the nation’s top 20 richest.
In its earnings announcement, Walmart drew attention to an expanded online growth of up to 40% and pointed to a rapid increase in its grocery business, a key battleground in its fight with Amazon, which a year ago bought Whole Foods to compete with Walmart in the grocery business. By the end of the year, Walmart said its grocery delivery service will be available in 40% of America, and its grocery pickup option is already in 1,800 locations.
If Walmart keeps this up, the Waltons may soon cross a threshold that absolutely no one else has. By our estimates, they’ll be the first $200 billion family in history.