Could Bernard Arnault become the richest man in the world?

As Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates compete to become the richest man in the world, it looks as if Bernard Arnault may topple them both with LVMH’s latest proposal to Tiffany Co. 

LVMH confirmed in a statement: that “as held preliminary discussions regarding a possible transaction with Tiffany," though it added that a deal had not been confirmed. Shortly after this Tiffany released a statement that it has “received an unsolicited, non-binding proposal from LVMH.” The luxury brand giant offered to purchase Tiffany for 14.5bn. The purchase of Tiffany will mark the largest transaction since it purchased Bulgari in 2011 for US$5.2bn.

Arnault is only a few billion dollars away from toppling Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Microsoft creator, Bill Gates. This acquisition could clinche the difference. 

Who is Bernard Arnault?

Bernard Arnault is the richest man in Europe and the third richest in the world, behind Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates, according to Forbes. Arnault owns a vast number of luxury goods brands, including Louis Vuitton, Sephora and LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton. One of his major acquisitions is that of Christian Dior, where Arnault used $15mn from his father's construction business to buy the designer brand in 1985. Arnault is also an art collector and was awarded the Museum of Modern Art's David Rockefeller Award in 2014. He has also been awarded honorary titles of Grand Officier de la Légion d’Honneur and Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres.

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Bernard Arnault Factbox

  • Age: 70

  • Citizenship: France

  • Occupation: Entrepreneur, media proprietor, Chairman and Chief Executive of LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton SE

  • Education: Bachelor of Arts/Science, Ecole Polytechnique de Paris

 

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