It was February of 2004 when a Pennsylvania-born socialite traded in her front-row seats at New York Fashion Week for a spot in the design room. More entrepreneur than quirky fashion creative, she married (and eventually divorced) an ICG Group investor, founded a boho-luxe clothing line named TRB, and went on to rack up industry accolades including the Rising Star Award from the Fashion Group International in 2005 and the Accessories Designer of the Year Award from the CFDA in 2008. And somewhere in between came an endorsement from the queen of talk show television, Oprah Winfrey — we all know what that support can do for one’s career! Fast forward nine years later and that society fixture now has a place among the richest men and women in the world. She’s now known as Tory Burch, billionaire.
There are no rules about what you can and can’t do anymore…Women are more empowered than they’ve ever been.
46. Three children. Self-made. That sums up the second-youngest female to ever join the Forbes billionaire (mostly) boys club since Sara Blakely changed shapewear with Spanx. What’s really amazing about Burch and her eponymous brand, though, is that her company amassed nearly 80% of her current fortune in 2012 alone. That’s $800 million dollars in revenue for the purveyor of all things bohemian chic in one year. Not bad for a woman with a series of career moves from Harper’s Bazaar to Ralph Lauren and Vera Wang in between.
Each job I had wasn’t necessarily the perfect job, but I always talk to young women about how you really have to take certain things from each job and learn from that and then move on to something you really want to do.
At present, Burch owns a 28.3% stake in her LLC. And since her ex-husband Chris Burch (founder of lower-priced competitor C. Wonder) sold his equal share in the company, she’s earned backing from General Atlantic and BDT Capital Partners. Now, Tory Burch, with a net worth of $1 billion, remains a primary stakeholder in Tory Burch the brand, valued at $2.5 billion. And that rank had more to do with savvy than ballet slippers. See what I mean below.