On Saturday, February 26, Tova Corporation founder and actor Ernest Borgnine's widow, Tova Borgnine, passed away at the age of 80. As per reports, she died from natural causes. Her cosmetics brand, Beauty by Tova, announced the news of her demise on Monday.
The team tweeted a tribute to the late entrepreneur via her profile on Monday:
"Our hearts and lives will forever be filled with your sparkle…"
While not much is known about Tova Borgnine's personal life, it has been reported that she is survived by a son from her previous marriage.
How much was Tova Borgnine worth?
At the time of her demise, Tova Borgnine's net worth was estimated to be around $15 to $25 million. The bulk of her fortune reportedly came from her cosmetics venture TOVA Corporation, which is known for its Beauty by Tova brand.
The Norway native was a Business MBA graduate from Harvard University who forayed into the cosmetics industry in 1977. By 1991, she was known for selling her beauty products via QVC, which earned her the moniker of "QVC's First Lady of Beauty."
Initially, Tova was in New York studying cosmetics and makeup art. She opened a boutique in New Jersey called Tova's Touch. At the time, she was married to a New Jersey businessman named Louis Littleton, with whom she shared a son.
However, following their divorce in 1972, Tova sold her business and went to Las Vegas. Following her marriage to renowned actor Ernest Borgnine in 1973, she started her cactus-based cosmetics line. After her massive success on QVC, the network acquired Tova's brand in 2002 for a "seven-figure sum," per The New York Times.
As per Entrepreneur, Tova has sold over 10 million bottles of the brand's 'Signature' perfume by 2009. Millions more must have been sold via QVC by now.
Tova Borgnine was named the Women's Fragrance Star of the Year (Non-Store Venues) at the FiFi Awards in 1998. A decade later, her 'Signature' perfume was nominated for the Fragrance Hall of Fame award at the FiFi awards.
The late businesswoman was reportedly left with access to her husband Ernest Borgnine's estate after he died in 2012.
As the Oscar-winning actor was estimated to be worth $15 million, Tova was expected to have received some of his fortune.
The exact percentage of the wealth Tova received is unknown as Ernest had four children from five marriages, who might also have inherited some of his fortune.