Sara Blakely

American billionaire businesswoman, and founder of Spanx


is an American billionaire businesswoman, and founder of Spanx, an American intimate apparel company with pants and leggings, founded in Atlanta, Georgia.

Story of success

Sara came upon the initial idea for Spanx when she cut the feet out of her pantyhose in 2000. But this inspiration wasn’t just a lucky accident; it was part of her innate commitment to thinking outside the box . . . and thinking in general. “I think!” she says, “I think recreationally! I have periods of time where I turn off my TV and sit on my couch and I think.” This habit has bred a confidence in her own ideas, and is a clear indication of the independent spirit that powers Sara’s work. She doesn’t need others to validate what she knows to be true; she just does it, knowing that any failures will eventually improve her efforts in a way that encouragement never could. That perspective is unique, and it feeds her characteristic momentum and drive.

In 2012, Blakely was named in Time magazine’s “Time 100” annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world. As of 2014, she is listed as the 93rd most powerful woman in the world by Forbes.