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Family businesses boost fortunes of Switzerland's wealthy

Switzerland’s three wealthiest residents are all family business owners, according to the country's latest rich list.
Family businesses boost fortunes of Switzerland's wealthy
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Switzerland’s three wealthiest residents are all family business owners, according to the country's latest rich list.

Zurich-based magazine Bilanz said Ingvar Kamprad, the founder of Swedish family-controlled furniture retailer Ikea, is Switzerland's wealthiest resident for the 10th year in a row, with an estimated net worth of CHF35 billion (€28.6 billion).

Switzerland’s Hoffmann and Oeri families, owners of pharmaceutical giant Roche, took the second spot with a combined fortune of about CHF13 billion, while the Dutch-German Brenninkmeijer family, which controls fashion retail chain C&A, is Switzerland’s third wealthiest resident, with CHF12 billion in assets.

Only 16 new individuals and families made the 300-strong list this year, including the Perfetti family, owners of confectionery manufacturer Perfetti Van Melle and worth CHF3 billion. The Vaillant family, which controls the eponymous heating and air-conditioning company,was also a new addition thanks to its estimated fortune of CHF700 million.

Together, Switzerland’s 300 wealthiest residents - half of whom are not Swiss – are worth CHF481 billion (€388 billion).

This is CHF11 billion more than in 2010 and enough to pay off Greece’s debt, which is estimated at €340 billion.

According to Bilanz, the Alpine country has the second highest proportion of resident billionaires in the world, coming only after the US. 

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