Two Indian-Origin Women on Forbes’ List of Richest Self-Made Women in U.S.

Jayshree Ullal and Neerja Sethi have been named on Forbes’ list of America’s most successful self-made women entrepreneurs and executives.


Two Indian-origin women have been named among the 60 richest self-made women in the United States by the Forbes magazine. Indian-origin technology professionals Jayshree Ullal and Neerja Sethi are placed on Forbes’ list of America’s most successful self-made women entrepreneurs and executives as measured by their net worths.

The list, which is facing criticism on the social media for featuring reality television star and entrepreneur Kylie Jenner as a self-made successful woman, features Ullal at No. 18 while Sethi is at the 21st spot.

Born in London and raised in India, Ullal is one of America’s wealthiest female executives, with a net worth of $1.3 billion, the publication said. She has been the president and CEO of Arista Networks, a computer networking firm, since 2008. The publicly-traded company recorded revenues of $1.6 billion in 2017.

Ullal owns about 5 percent of Arista’s stock, some of which is earmarked for her two children, niece and nephew. She joined Arista when it had no revenues and fewer than 50 employees, the report said. The 57-year-old California-based executive was placed at No.1,756 on Forbes’ list of billionaires in 2018.

Florida-based Sethi, the vice president of IT consulting and outsourcing company Syntel, has a net worth of $1 billion. The 63-year-old former TCS employee co-founded the firm with her husband Bharat Desai at their apartment in Troy, Michigan, in 1980. Syntel, with was started with an initial investment of $2,000, registered $924 million in 2017 revenues. About 80 percent of its 23,000 employees are in India.

The Forbes’ list is topped by Diane Hendricks, who owns ABC Supply, one of the largest wholesale distributors of roofing, siding and windows in America. Hendricks has a net worth of $4.9 billion. Also included in the list are talk show host and media proprietor Oprah Winfrey (No. 6), Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg (No. 12), singer Madonna (No. 36) and YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki (No. 42).

The combined net worth of the top 60 self-made women is $71 billion, 15 percent more than that in 2017. The minimum net worth to make Forbes’ fourth annual ranking of these top women jumped 23 percent to a record $320 million. As many as 24 women on the list are billionaires, up from 18 last year.

The youngest woman to figure on the list is Kylie Jenner, who turns 21 in August. “Half-sister of Kim Kardashian West, who is also on the list for the first time, Jenner has leveraged her massive social media following (110 million followers on Instagram) to build a $900 million cosmetics fortune in less than three years. That makes her worth more than twice as much as her more famous sister,” the publication said.

Jenner’s inclusion in the list, however, has sparked a backlash on the social media, with people questioning her being a “self-made” person.

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