The World’s Most Powerful Women: April 26

April 26, 2016, 5:25 AM UTC

Good morning, WMPW readers! A record number of women made Britain’s rich list, Yves Saint Laurent’s chief exec talks about managing a successful fashion business, and in one area of Silicon Valley, women rule. Got some news on an exceptional woman? Reach out to me, at: or @laurascohn. Have a good Tuesday!





British billionaires

A record 125 women made the The Sunday Times' list of the 1,000 richest people in Britain this year. As you might guess, the list includes J.K. Rowling, who's worth 600 million pounds; designer Victoria Beckham, who, with husband David, is worth 280 million pounds; and brewing heiress Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken, worth 9.15 billion pounds with husband Michel de Carvalho. But there are lesser-known figures on the list: Shirley Hill, who founded Metro Bank with her husband Vernon, and is worth 400 million pounds. Denise Coates, who founded Bet365, a leading online gambling firm, is on the list, too. With a family net worth of more than 3.7 billion pounds, she is Britain's richest self-made woman.

The Times


Balancing act
Francesca Bellettini, chief exec of fast-growing Yves Saint Laurent, says a crucial part of managing a business is balance. Bellettini says her brand derives its revenue from a range of products sold to customers in a range of countries. "Saint Laurent is never too skewed vis-a-vis anything—vis-a-vis a product category, vis-a-vis a channel—because we really believe in balance," she said.
Business of Fashion


Growing a thick skin
Gina Miller, co-founder of investment boutique SCM Private, has campaigned against sneaky charges in the asset management market. It hasn't come without a cost. While attending a recent industry function, she said a man told her she was a "disgrace" and that her campaign "would bring down the entire City [London's financial district]." Miller, who was born in Guyana, says, "I believe that level of abuse means I am doing something right for investors."
Financial Times


Read my lips
A University of East Anglia researcher, Helen Bear, is developing technology to enable computers to read lips. The scientific advance could aid people with recent hearing loss.


Treating disease
Subhadra Dravida founded Transcell Biologics, a stem cell technology company, in 2009. Now Dravida, also the firm's chief executive, is conducting research trials to treat a number of debilitating conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis, muscular dystrophy, and stroke. The company broke even two years ago and recently received its first investment from the Indian Angel Network.
Business Standard


Finding peace in chaos
Cathy Chai left her steady job in finance at a UN agency in Beijing for a finance gig at Medecins San Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) in war-torn South Sudan. Despite a heavy workload and "massive" pressure, she said she feels secure in her career. "I most often work in places that are torn by war, natural disasters or epidemic, but I'm incredibly at peace amid the chaos," she said.
South China Morning Post


Where women rule
Silicon Valley always seems to be abuzz about the limited number of women in the tech industry. But in one area—public relations—women appear to dominate.


Sustaining sustainable fashion
Eileen Fisher is trying to raise the bar for sustainable fashion. It isn't easy.


Bringing women together
Investing veterans Deborah Jackson and Andrea Turner Moffitt connect female entrepreneurs with investors in a creative way with their firm, Plum Alley Investments.


Comedienne Amy Schumer makes the cover of Vanity Fair
Vanity Fair

Trump supporters sell 'Trump That Bitch' t-shirts depicting Hillary Clinton as the businessman candidate struggles to attract female voters

Women will grace 5 pound and 10 pound notes in Scotland

How a woman rose to senior product manager from customer support at Etsy
New York Times

Fire departments in the U.S. turn to women volunteers
New York Times

Designer Christine Kendall sues Alexander McQueen over Duchess of Cambridge's wedding dress




The only time that there is more women on the set as extras is a swimming pool scene and they're all in bikinis—any swimming pool scene and suddenly it's full of women.
— actress Helen Mirren, reflecting on a lack of roles for women in movies