Business

Gina Rinehart no longer Australia's richest person

Gina Rinehart Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Gina Rinehart was at one time the richest woman in the world

Australian billionaire Gina Rinehart has lost her top spot on the Forbes Australia rich list.

Ms Rinehart, an iron ore tycoon, had been named by Forbes magazine as the country's richest citizen for the past five years straight.

But her fortune fell by A$4.5bn ($3.2bn; £2.25bn) in the last year, the sharpest drop on the list in dollar terms.

Australia's new richest person is US-born heiress Blair Parry-Okeden.

Ms Rinehart still, however, has a net worth of $8.5bn.

Media heiress new top

Ms Rinehart inherited mineral and exploration company Hancock Prospecting from her father, and is its chairperson.

Over the years she has been embroiled in several court battles to maintain a firm grip on her business empire.

She was for a time the richest woman in the world.

Her fall from the top spot is attributed in part to a global drop in the price of iron ore.

Ms Parry-Okeden, the American born heiress to US media company Cox Enterprises, moved to Australia decades ago with her former husband and has only recently been naturalised as Australian citizen.

Her wealth is quoted by Forbes magazine as $8.8bn.

Property investor Harry Triguboff comes third on this year's Australian list, with a net worth of $6.9bn.

Rising rents and continuing Chinese demand for his Sydney apartments helped drive up Mr Triguboff's fortune by $1.3 bn, Forbes says in its report.

A total of eight women make the 2015 list, double last year's tally.

Overall, 26 of the fortunes listed by Forbes fell compared to the previous year, because of the weaker Australian dollar.

Biggest winner was Mike Cannon-Brookes, whose wealth jumped by 62% thanks to last years' stock market floatation of his software company Atlassian.

Thirty-six year old Mr Cannon-Brookes is the country's 17th richest person with $1.78bn.

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