1. WALTON FAMILY (Wal-Mart) Net Worth: $152 Billion
The children, daughter-in-law and nieces of legendary retailer Sam Walton control a 54% stake in the world’s largest retailer, which introduced groceries in its discount stores in 1988. Today the company chaired by Rob Walton (pictured), sells groceries in 3,500 locations, making it the U.S.’ largest supermarket chain.
2. CHARLES BUTT (H.E. Butt Grocery Co.) Net Worth: $10.5 Billion
Butt is the Chairman and majority shareholder of $19 billion (sales) H.E. Butt, a regional supermarket chain that his ancestors founded more than a century ago. His two siblings and two nephews also own some of the family company, which now operates 305 stores in Texas and 42 in Mexico. It has opened nine Central Market stores in Texas to compete with Whole Foods.
3. HANK AND DOUG MEIJER (Meijer) Net Worth: $8.3 Billion
In 1934 when groceries were scarce, Hendrik Meijer with his 14-year old son, Frederik, opened Meijer Grocery for his barbershop customers. In 1962 he opened his first general store. Today the grocery chain, run by grandson Hank (pictured) and Doug, has nearly $15billion in sales from 200 stores in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky.
4. JENKINS FAMILY (Publix) Net Worth: $4 Billion
Daughter of the Publix founder, Carol Jenkins Barnett runs the company’s charitable arm and is the Florida-based retailer’s single biggest individual shareholder, worth over $1 billion. Her brother Howard is next, with a stake valued at $620 million. Altogether the founder’s descendants own a 20% stake worth combined $4.2 billion. Employees own the rest of the company.
5. JOYCE RALEY TEEL (Raley’s) Net Worth: $1.7 Billion
Her father, Tom, opened the first Raley’s supermarket in California’s gold country in 1935 and expanded from there. She joined the company in 1985 and inherited it when her dad died in 1991. Joyce and her husband, Jim, serve as co-chairs; her son Michael is CEO. Raley’s, with sales of $3 billion, has 128 stores in California and Nevada, including Bel Aire Markets and Nob Hill Foods.
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