Tory Burch Is the Newest Self-Made Female Billionaire

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Tory Burch BillionaireThis feel-good news comes from our friends at The Jane Dough

Tory Burch, who started her company Tory Burch LLC from her kitchen table, is now a billionaire. Her new status is partly due to her ex-husband Chris Burch finally selling his stake in her company. According to Bloomberg, the sale of the 28.3% stake is worth $3.3 billion. Tory’s stake in her company is worth around $935 million—add in the $70 million Tory has made in the last ten years from equity sales and dividends and you’ve got a very cool billion dollars.

And to think this lady didn’t even have a formal design or business background. Though she had worked for Ralph Lauren and Harper’s Bazaar she felt pretty clueless when she decided to start her own company. “I’d never been to business school. I’d never been to design school. It was a risk. It was putting myself out there in a way that was opening myself up for criticism. I’m a sensitive person, so it was hard,” she said in a recent interview.

But she worked past it, cold-calling people to ask if she could show them her image books. This was not a sketch book of her designs but rather a book of images she had collected over the years that showed what she thought was missing from fashion and stores. With some help from Chris Burch, her venture capitalist husband, she raised $10 million. She started working from her kitchen table. Soon her staff grew to 16 people and now she is in charge of 2,000 people. Her iconic brand is available at 49 free-standing Tory Burch stores across the U.S., 24 international stores and over 1,000 select department and specialty stores worldwide, according to Business Insider. When you see that little double-T circle symbol, you know Tory is nearby.

But if you think Tory has become full of herself because of her tremendous success, think again. While people say she is one of the most influential designers in America, she says she still looks over her shoulder. Cosmopolitan Editor Joanna Coles said, “People love her. They want to be her. And she’s really nice. Tory is not a monstrous, crazy fashion b*tch. She is an incredibly liked, well-respected woman.” She added, “This is a woman that men fight over. It all adds to the mystique of Tory Burch. Her clothes exude that.” And did we mention she loves to help other women find success? Check out the Tory Burch Foundation.

Sounds like a true success story. Congrats Tory!

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Image credit: Flickr/david_shankbone

  • Bbidwell

    Can I be born into money; marry money (2x) and then say I’m self-made? This is not rags to riches….rich to more riches. “from her kitchen table…” please…it makes me cry to hear her hardship.

  • Assetsrep

    Bbidwell is absolutely spot on.  Chris Burch made a lot of this happen with his established network in the industry. My father-in-law’s family is full of unsuccessful silver spoon fed members. Even with their money, they can’t seem to find the motivation to follow through with any of their difficult endeavors. Anyway, they both made a success story and all they had to sacrifice is their marriage and family.