L'Oreal Heiress and World’s Richest Woman, Liliane Bettencourt, Dies at 94

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On Thursday, Francoise Bettencourt-Meyers, daughter of Liliane Bettencourt, released a statement announcing the death of her mother at age 94. Liliane died in her mansion west of Paris, with a fortune valued at approximately $43 billion, according to Forbes.

Liliane’s net worth puts her $4.2 billion ahead of Alice Walton, an heiress to the Wal-Mart Stores Inc. fortune.

Following the death of her mother, Francoise is now the new “reclusive, 64-year old heiress” of L’Oreal. Through the family holding company, she now takes charge of her family’s 33 percent stake in the cosmetics giant.

According to The Wall Street Journal, shares in L’Oréal jumped almost 4% Friday as investors began speculating on the possibility either side might reconsider Nestlé’s large stake in L’Oréal. Nestlé’s is currently the second largest owner of shares.

Nestle told CNN Money it was "not the right time to make a comment" when asked about the future of its stake.

"Bettencourt dies. The clock is now ticking," analysts at Jefferies wrote in a note. "What should be respected as a melancholic end to an era for the Bettencourts is now set to be subsumed by speculation around the future of Nestle's 23% stake in L'Oreal," they added.

The complete opposite of her mother, who was a booming socialite, Franciose is known for playing piano for hours a day and has written two books; a five-volume study of the Bible and a genealogy of the Greek gods.

CNN Money reports that L'Oreal had revenues of €25.8 billion ($31 billion) in 2016, making it the world's biggest cosmetics company.

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