News Column

Richest Woman in Spain Dies at 69

August 16, 2013

Rosalia Mera, co-founder of the fashion group Inditex which includes the retail giant Zara, has died at age 69, Inditex said Friday.

Forbes magazine has estimated Mera's fortune at 4.6 billion euros (6.1 billion dollars), making her Spain's richest woman.

Mera suffered a brain hemorrhage while vacationing with her daughter on Menorca Island on Wednesday. She was flown to hospital in La Coruna in her north-western home region of Galicia, where she died overnight Friday.

Mera left school at age 11 to work as a seamstress. In 1966, she married Amancio Ortega. The two set up a small textile company that grew to include the chains Zara, Massimo Dutti and Stradivarius.

The couple had two children. They divorced in 1986.

Ortega has a fortune of 43 billion euros, making him one of the world's richest men.

Faithful to her modest origins, Mera had criticized government budget cuts to social programmes. She also opposed measures to restrict access to abortion.

Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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