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#100 Beate Heister $12.9B

Random fact: Aldi is divided into North and South along Germany's Ruhr river.


Heister controls half of Aldi Sued, the second-largest discount food retailer in Germany. The Muelheim an der Ruhr-based company operates more than 5,600 stores and had 51.1 billion euros ($56.5 billion) in revenue in 2016. Heister's father started the business with his brother Theo, from whom he split in 1960.

As of Oct. 17, 2017:
Last change -$4.26M (-0.0%)
YTD change +$1.75B (+15.8%)
Industry Retail
Biggest asset Aldi Sued
Citizenship Germany
Age 62
Wealth Inherited
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

Beate Heister's net worth of $12.9B can buy ...

troy ounces of gold
barrels of crude oil

... and is equivalent to ...

of the GDP of the United States
of the total wealth of the 500 richest people in the world
of the top 100 U.S. college endowments
of the top 200 U.S. executives’ total awarded compensation
of U.S. existing home sales
times the median U.S. household income

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Net Worth Summary

Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

Heister's fortune is derived from her 50 percent stake in Aldi Sued, the second-largest discount food retailer in Germany, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Aldi Sued had revenue of 51.1 billion euros ($56.5 billion) in 2016, according to Frankfurt-based consultancy Planet Retail. Heister controls Aldi Sued with her brother, Karl Jr., and her husband and oldest son, through Eichenau, Germany-based Siepmann trust, according to an interview with her late father Karl Albrecht in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper in 2014.

The valuation of Aldi Sued is based on the average enterprise value-to-sales and enterprise value-to-Ebitda multiples of three publicly traded peer companies: Tesco, Casino and DIA.

Kirsten Gess, a spokeswoman for Aldi Sued, declined to comment on Heister's net worth calculation.


Family: Married, 6 children

Heister's father, Karl Albrecht, was born in Essen, Germany, in 1920, to Karl Albrecht Sr., a miner, and Anna Albrecht, who owned and ran a supermarket. Her father served in the German Wehrmacht during WWII and was wounded on the Russian front. He returned to Essen in 1946 with his younger brother Theo to take over their mother's grocery. By 1953, the brothers had expanded to about 30 discount supermarkets under the name Albrechts.

The company's name was changed in the early 1960s to Aldi, short for Albrecht Discount. The brothers subsequently split Aldi into two separate companies: Aldi Sued and Aldi Nord. Theo took the northern part of West Germany, plus western and southern Europe. Karl owned and operated the stores in southern and southwest Germany, the U.S., U.K., Australia and Eastern Europe.

Aldi Sued's retail expansion outside Germany started with the opening of a store in Austria in 1968. The first U.S. store opened in 1976, followed by the U.K. in 1989, and Australia in 2001.

Karl Albrecht stepped down as Aldi Sued CEO in 1994, and as chairman in 2002. He shunned public life after Theo was kidnapped and released in 1971. Theo died in July 2010, at age 88. Karl divided his time between Essen and his villa in Germany's Black Forest before his death in July 2014. He was married with two children, Karl Jr. and Beate, and six grandchildren.

Karl Jr. and Beate each received half of their father's fortune, and serve on Aldi Sued's supervisory board. Beate is married with six children. Karl Jr. is childless.

  • 1913 Grandmother Anna founds grocery shop in Essen, Germany.
  • 1920 Father, Karl, born to Karl Sr. and Anna Albrecht.
  • 1946 Albrecht brothers take over their mother's grocery store in Essen.
  • 1960 Supermarket chain Albrechts renamed Aldi and split into separate companies.
  • 1971 Uncle Theo kidnapped. Family pays 7 million deutsche mark ransom.
  • 1973 Father creates Siepmann trust to manage family wealth.
  • 1976 Aldi Sued opens first store outside Europe in the U.S.
  • 1994 Father becomes Aldi Sued chairman and steps down as CEO.
  • 2010 Uncle Theo dies. His sons Berthold and Theo Jr. inherit Aldi Nord.
  • 2014 Inherits half of Aldi Sued after father Karl Albrecht dies.