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Louis Vuitton Owner Bernard Arnault Overtakes Billionaire Elon Musk To Become The Richest Man In The World

Louis Vuitton Owner Bernard Arnault Overtakes South African Billionaire Elon Musk To Become The Richest Man In The World

LVMH co-founder and CEO Bernard Arnault, who also owns Louis Vuitton, has overtaken billionaire Elon Musk to become the wealthiest man in the world.

As of 21 December 2022, Forbes reports that Arnault’s net worth stands at US$179 billion (R3.1 trillion). Musk is now worth US$155.8 billion.

The 73-year-old Frenchman is the co-founder, chairman and CEO of LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, commonly called LVMH. According to SEC filings, his holding company is its largest stockholder, with 60% shares, and has majority voting rights in the Euronext Paris Eurolist–listed company, LVMH.

The French billionaire’s rise up the rich list was spurred by Elon Musk’s fall in wealth, pushed by the decline in electric carmaker Tesla’s share value. Guardian reported that the electric car company lost more than half its market value since Musk first bid to acquire Twitter in April 2022.

Just this year, Musk’s net worth has plummeted by $107 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. In comparison, Arnault’s wealth tumbled by a lower $7 billion.

CNN reports that Bernard Arnault was born in Roubaix, northern France, in 1949. He graduated from the elite École Polytechnique, an engineering school in the capital, Paris.  He kicked off his career in the family-owned construction company, Ferret-Savinel, becoming chairman in 1978 after successive promotions.

In 1984, the French government searched for a new investor to take over Boussac Saint-Freres, a bankrupt textile group which owned Christian Dior, a celebrated French fashion house.

After Arnault took control of the group, he turned it around, and it became profitable.In 1989, Arnault bought a controlling stake in LVMH, two years after the group was formed by the merger of Louis Vuitton and Moët Hennessy.

Since then, he has been chairman and CEO of the company.  Arnault has turned LVMH into a luxury goods powerhouse with 75 brands selling wine, spirits, fashion, leather goods, perfumes, cosmetics, watches, jewellery, luxury travel and hotel stays.

LVMH owns Loius Vuitton, Christian Dior, Tag Heuer, Tiffany and Co, Fendy, Givenchy, Hennessy, Moet & Chandon, Parfums Christian Dior and Fenty Beauty By Rihanna, among many others.

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