Seven types of wealthy women

What does wealth mean to women? How do they approach risk management? And which motivation lies behind the creation of wealth? Tamara Gillan and Lauren von Stackelburg, co-founders of the WealthiHer Network, have set out to find some answers. Their findings are summarised in the WealthiHer Report 2019 (see ’downloads’).

“Our experience as a female entrepreneurs has led us to believe that women’s attitudes and the drivers for their wealth are different to men,” say Tamara Gillan and Lauren von Stackelburg, co-founders of the WealthiHer Network. According to its founders, the WealthiHer Network is an essential force for change, championing the transformation of the industry’s approach to women; understanding their diversity of needs, celebrating their success and empowering women to grow and protect their wealth in new ways. Julius Baer proudly supports the initiative.

The WealthiHer Report 2019
The research was carried out in the UK between February 1, 2019 and April 30, 2019. Working with Kantar, a world-leading market research consultancy, the WealthiHer Network surveyed more than 2’542 people about their attitudes to wealth; spotting trends around how women’s attitudes to wealth differed to men. Furthermore, more than 100 high-net worth women participated in an online survey, taking into account the scale and source of their wealth - be that through corporate and career endeavours; entrepreneurship; marriage: or inheritance. 71% of respondents are based in London and the South, with an even distribution across other regions. 63% are currently married with the remainder being single, divorced or widowed. In terms of scale of wealth, nearly half (48%) are in the £1-5m wealth bracket, with 14% between £5-10m and 10% have above £10m. 63% have made their wealth while 12% inherited it, and the remainder accessed their wealth through marriage and a combination of different sources. The numbers were complemented by one-to-one interviews and focus group sessions with financially successful women to understand their different approaches to their wealth.

1. The pragmatists

Often from more humble beginnings, pragmatists come into wealth through hard work and determination. They understand that money cannot buy you happiness but they also know money makes the hard times a lot more comfortable. While they may not believe it is right they can be accepting of the fact that success is often measured in financial terms. Kate Percival MSc, Luxury Brand Consultant: “Success to me is still about financial success – that is how we are judged and respected. Not everyone can be a winner or receive a medal for participation. That absolves responsibility, determination, focus, challenge – and we all need those things in our lives to get up every day and feel positive, motivated and valued.” Anne-Marie Imafidon OBE, founder Stemettes: “I thought if I could do something I enjoy and get paid a fair amount, why wouldn’t I do that?”

2. Independence seekers

Independence seekers use their wealth to give them freedom. For them it is about not being reliant on others to do what they want to do. Once earned independence is not something they are going to give up in a hurry. This can lead them to being risk aware and wanting a high level of control over their investment choices. Tanya Kazamini, investor, artist and entrepreneur: “I am all about making my own money so I am not indebted to anyone. I don’t want to rely on anyone for my independence and security. I don’t need to be loaded, I just want to be comfortable. But I really really need to make it myself so I can feel certainty." 

3. The adventurer

Adventurers are looking for as many experiences as they can get. Wealth for them comes from the life they live. Money is the ticket that gets them on the ride. They are risk takers. Sian Sutherland, Co-Founder of A Plastic Planet: “Money is amazing when you have it and terrible when you don’t. As an entrepreneur married to an entrepreneur, we have lived the rollercoaster of money for thirty years. Money is a vehicle to take me to the best experiences of my life, with my family and friends.” Clare Balding, broadcaster, author and Investec Ambassador: “The aim is to have a varied, challenging life and to keep on learning but the ultimate reward is to be happy and to give myself time to enjoy days at work and days off.”

4. The democrats

Democrats want to increase representation and level the playing field. They see their role as supporting other women. Democrats want to open opportunities for others and drive democratisation. Savannah de Savary, founder of Built-ID: “The point of the business is to try and democratise the property industry in any way that we can, trying to make it less of an old boys club and make it more inclusive. I see my role as flying the flag for women to give them better advice, access and growth.”

5. The providers

Providers are often the main breadwinner in their household. They care most about accumulating a legacy for their children. They are more interested in the selfsatisfaction that they get from other areas of their life than the money but they want to make sure their wealth gives a helping hand to their children and grandchildren. Dame Stephanie Shirley, information technology pioneer: “For me money gives me a) the ability to have a comfortable life but b) be able to help my family to have a nice secure life and have access to the opportunities that I think they deserve.” Tracey Reddings, wealth management industry leader: “I want to be successful for my daughter, to both inspire her and provide for her."

6. The supporters

Supporters see wealth as something that comes from health, family and friends. They are financially secure and use money as a tool to support themselves, their friends and those around them achieve their goals. They provide a ladder to those they love and the causes they believe in. “Success is about health and creating a good impact on my tribe for a better tomorrow.” Linda Jackson, CEO Citroën: “I think there is an element of what I can do to help people and I really do enjoy helping to further people’s careers and helping them achieve the same things that I have.” Annabel Wilson, founder of Living Ashram: “Wealth for me is about having the time, and the resources, and the people in my life who are really meaningful to me to share them with. That loyal circle of friends, that partner, that whole thing, so it’s not just about finances or about maximizing return on investment. It’s living life as joyfully and abundantly as possible.”

7. The legacy creators

For the legacy creators wealth is something that lasts beyond their own lifetime and beyond their own family. They want their wealth to build something that continues to say something about them long after they have gone. For them it is a ticket to ensuring their place in history. Carol Bagnald, finance leader, business co-founder and advisor: “Wealth goes on a journey. First it is about independence, then support for family and then giving back. Independence is about survival. When you are at that moment building a legacy seems too far off. But then it’s almost like a light switch moment - it suddenly changes.” Édéenne, founder of Maison Édéenne: “I have no wealth but Maison Édéenne. I did not want to become a jeweler. My only dream was to become one of the top houses of high jewellery. Miishe Addy, co-founder and CEO of Jetstream Africa: “For me, success is a journey rather than a destination. Today, I am doing intellectually challenging, meaningful work, and - in the process - building wealth for our business, investors and customers.”

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