The World’s Most Powerful Women: August 3

August 3, 2016, 6:43 AM UTC

Uber’s headline-grabbing retreat from China this week was a big win for one of the top female power players in Asia: Jean Liu, the president of Didi Chuxing and a member of Fortune‘s 40 Under 40 list.

As Liu told employees in an email, the merger of Uber’s China division with market leader Didi marked the end of an “epic battle” between the rival ride-sharing services companies in China, the Financial Times reported. Liu, a former Goldman Sachs managing director and daughter of Lenovo founder Liu Chuanzhi, sounded an upbeat note about the deal. “We raged an earth-shaking war, and when we join hands, our love will last till the end of time,” she wrote in the email, according to the FT.

Not knowing Liu, I’m not sure if she was trying to be funny with that comment about love or not. But this much is clear: Didi has been on a tear in terms of fund raising. As Fortune reported, at a California conference in June, Liu noted that Didi has raised billions of dollars—even more than money magnet Uber. Back then, Liu characterized the ride-sharing industry as being “in a very early stage.” Given the news this week, it seems like she’s just getting started.


A Gap in judgment
Another Gap ad is coming under criticism, this time for showing images of clothes for kids deemed by Twitter users to be sexist. The U.K. ad—showing a boy dubbed "The Little Scholar" in an Albert Einstein t-shirt, and a girl in a sweater and a headband with animal ears dubbed "The Social Butterfly"—inspired Scottish Government Minister for Further Education Shirley-Anne Somerville to tweet: "No wonder girls don't choose STEM careers after they've been subjected to this rubbish growing up."


A different kind of ambition
Saatchi & Saatchi executive chairman Kevin Roberts was asked to take a leave of absence after crudely telling Business Insider that women lack "vertical ambition." Yet, as Fortune's Claire Zillman points out, Roberts failed to acknowledge that there's another type of ambition: horizontal. Pattie Sellers, executive director of Fortune‘s Most Powerful Women Summits, has long compared the two this way: In chasing vertical power, men look toward the next rung on the ladder. Women’s perspective is more peripheral, allowing them to see and seek opportunities that come along the way.


A long path to Rio
I'll admit to finding just about any Olympic athlete awe-inspiring, but this woman is particularly noteworthy. Meet Yusra Mardini, who will compete on the first Olympic refugee team as a swimmer. Mardini—going for gold in the 100-meter butterfly and the 100-meter freestyle—embarked on a month-long journey a year ago as she fled war in Syria for the safety of Germany.
New York Times


Meg Whitman switches sides
Meg Whitman is supporting Hillary Clinton. Yes, you read that right. The Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO and GOP fundraiser told the New York Times she is backing Clinton with a "substantial" donation because Donald Trump is "a dishonest demagogue." Whitman is just the latest in a string of high-profile Republicans who say they will not vote for Trump.


Buffett backs Hillary
Speaking of Clinton, Money has an interesting run-down of how much money Warren Buffett is spending on her campaign. Turns out, the sage of Omaha has given about $6,000 in individual donations over the last 15 years, which means he's pretty much abided by election rules, the publication says. But he's also donated $25,000 to the Ready for Hillary Super PAC, and has held fundraising events for her, including one that Politico said charged $33,400 a head. By the way, that's the same amount Leonardo DiCaprio is charging for the fundraiser he's hosting for Clinton next month.

Trump's advice
Donald Trump, in comments that set off a debate, said women who suffer from sexual harassment at work should find another job. In an interview with USA Today, Trump said if his daughter Ivanka was sexually harassed, he "would like to think she would find another career or find another company." That's one option, but it shouldn't be the victim who has to make a change.


Paying parents
Last week's DNC put paid family leave on the national agenda, with a pledge to guarantee up to 12 weeks of paid leave to care for a new child or ill family member. But CNBC reports some companies—such as Netflix, Etsy, Google, Microsoft, and Facebook—already offer such benefits to new mothers and fathers.


Ballad to a banana
Talk about stress. Female pop artists in Korea come under so much pressure to alter their appearance—by losing weight and changing their faces and hair—a rock star has started singing about it. Park Boram notes in her first single that at times, her daily diet would consist of just a banana and an egg. The English title of the song is "Beautiful," but the Korean name literally translates to: "I became pretty."


Check out Apple's new emojis, which show women working and men getting pampered

Granddaughter of mogul Sumner Redstone is added to lawsuit against him
New York Times

Women make it to the traditionally male-dominated upper ranks of political donors
Washington Post

Massachusetts takes big step towards equal pay

Why the US Olympic team should pick Ibtihaj Muhammad as its flagbearer in Rio

How Libyan activist Asma Khalifa is promoting women's rights


Yesterday's girl is the same as the old woman of today.
—suspended Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, who's facing an impeachment trial in late August and won't be attending the opening ceremony of the Rio Olympics