- Bernard Arnault Biography (LVMH) – Fun facts
- Bernard Arnault: Early Years
- Career of Bernard Arnault
- 4) CEO & Chairman Of LVMH
- 5) Ferinel
- 6) Bankruptcy Of Boussac
- 7) LVMH
- 8) Chateau d’Yquem
- 9) Self-Exile In USA
- 10) Shares In Carrefour
- 11) Tajan
- 12) Shares in Bulgari
- 13) Taking over Bulgari
- 14) LVMH and Hermès controversy
- 15) Sephora, DFS and Cèline
- 16) Louis Vuitton
- 17) Christian Dior
- 18) Glory To LVMH
- 19) La Tribune – A Failure
- 20) DKNY
- 21) Japan’s Economy And LVMH
- 22) Loss At Fendi
- 23) The Largest Brand Of Luxury Goods
- Accolades – Bernard Arnault
- 24) The French Legion Of Honor
- 25) Corporate Citizenship Award
- 26) Honorary Knight Commander Of The Most Excellent Order Of The British Empire
- 27) 56th On Powerful People List
- 28) No. 10 Forbes Billionaire
- 29) No. 2 Billionaire In France
- 30) Young Creators LVMH Award
- 31) The Fashion Person
- 32) Time’s Most Influential People
- 33) KBE But Not ‘Sir Bernard’
- 34) Grand Officer Of The French Legion
- Creative Decisions
- Other Work
- Personal Interests of Beranrd Arnault
- Bernard Arnault : Other Investments
- Wealth of Bernard Arnault
- Personality of Bernard Arnault
- Personal Life of Bernard Arnault
- Present Day
- 82) Business Competitors
- 83) Delphine Arnault
- 84) Antoine Arnault
- 85) Groupe Arnault
- 86) Arnault And Star Brands
- 87) Celebrities Endorsing Louis Vuitton
- 88) World’s 29th Most Valuable Brand
- 89) No. 1 On Top Ten Most Powerful Brands List
- 90) Louis Vuitton’s Association With Sofia Coppola
- 91) Positive Effect Of Globalization
- 92) Profit Margins In Luxury Brands
- 93) A Profile Of Over 60 Brands
Bernard Arnault Biography (LVMH) – Fun facts
Bernard Arnault: Early Years
1) Bernard Jean Étienne Arnault
It was March 5, 1949, a Saturday, when Bernard Jean Étienne Arnault was born.
The famous businessman shares his birthday with other celebrities like Tom Russell, Eva Mendes and Aasif Mandvi. Bernard Arnault’s birthplace is Roubaix, France.
Bernard Arnault is the son of Jean Leon Arnault, who was working as a manufacturer at the time. Jean Leon Arnault owned a civil engineering company named Ferret-Savinel.
Bernard Arnault’s mother is known to be an expert pianist.
Bernard has taken his mother’s love for piano and incorporated it in his life.
His parents were followers of the Roman Catholic Church and Arnault too is a Catholic.
Bernard Arnault was a student of the Maxence Van Der Meersch High School.
He completed his schooling in Roubaix, France, and later attended École Polytechnique where he studied engineering to join the family business in the near future.
Arnault graduated in 1971. Many people find it difficult to believe that one of the most successful businessmen of the world has no formal education in the field.
Career of Bernard Arnault
4) CEO & Chairman Of LVMH
Bernard Arnault is known for his luxury group, LVMH.
Arnault has been functioning as both the chairman and chief executive officer of LVMH since 1989.
LVMH is a group with a number of brands taken over by Arnault from time to time by moving smoothly at the right time.
Bernard Arnault became a part of the family business after completing his degree in 1971.
Even though Arnault studied engineering, he set out to do a lot more.
Arnault later persuaded his father to sell out the company’s department of construction for a fortune of 40 million francs.
His main idea was to change the concentration of the business towards real estate projects.
Under the name of Ferinel, a holiday resort was built. Arnault became the director and the CEO of Ferinel in 1977.
In 1979, Arnault was made the president of Ferinel.
6) Bankruptcy Of Boussac
Boussac, a textile firm and the owner of Christian Dior, faced bankruptcy.
The French government was keen to find someone to take over this sinking ship.
Bernard Arnault, playing smartly, gathered enough cash with the help of a friend working in an investment firm to buy Boussac in 1984.
Arnault was least interested in the other ventures of the firm and sold them off piece by piece.
Arnault however kept Christian Dior for himself, worked on the brand and made it a star.
Moët Hennessy-Louis Vuitton is a luxury brand group which came into being after the merger in 1971 between Moët Hennessy and Louis Vuitton, a fashion brand. The fashion conglomerate owns over 60 brands under it, such as Christian Dior, Louis Vuitton, Fendi, Celine, TAG Heuer, Zenith, Bulgari, etc. The LVMH group was taken over by Arnault after he took advantage of a dispute between the CEO of Moët Hennessy and the president of Louis Vuitton. After witnessing a crash in the stock market in October 1987, Arnault acquired 43% shares of LVMH and later was asked by Henri Racamiér, former chairman of LVMH’s Louis Vuitton subsidiary, to invest in the company. However, LVMH was facing a clash of interests when Arnault stepped in and later proposed a takeover bid. He became the majority shareholder of LVMH and later was elected the undisputed chairperson of LVMH in 1989.
8) Chateau d’Yquem
A wine brand owned by LVMH, Chateau d’Yquem is a wine of superior quality. The brand has been under LVMH for some time. The origin of the brand dates to 1953 and it is known for its concentration and sweet taste. Chateau d’Yquem is a very highly priced wine produced in areas of Bordeaux known as Graves. Bernard Arnault and his friend Albert Frere own a vineyard in Bordeaux producing wine such as Chateau d’Yquem. Chateau d’Yquem is one of the top ten brands of wine and is popular among first families and royals.
9) Self-Exile In USA
After a French Socialist government took control in 1981, problems for the rich began in France. The Socialist government imposed high taxes on the rich and started nationalizing companies. Bernard Arnault, in order to protect the interest of his company, migrated to Florida for a good three years’ time. He returned when the government moderated its policies.
LVMH made an investment in the supermarket chain Carrefour in 2007. Carrefour is one of the biggest retailers, second to Wal-Mart for turnover. LVMH owns approximately 11% shares of Carrefour. LVMH has, however, seen deterioration in the profits of Carrefour. The worth of LVMH’s investment has been reduced by a significant $1 billion.
Bernard Arnault bought the auction house Tajan in 2001 in order to compete with François Pinault. After a business venture of three years, the LVMH group decided to sell off the auctioneer to Rodica B. Seward. Tajan was expected to make huge profits for the company but the brand was unable to perform according to the expectations of the LVMH group.
Bulgari, the Italian jewelry brand known for quality and heritage, had been making losses for a while. Bernard Arnault as always was looking to buy into a company and soon made an investment in Bulgari with a limited number of shares. The Bulgari business was family owned at the time.
13) Taking over Bulgari
Bulgari is one of the oldest brands in the jewelry sector and has a unique success story. However, as the economies of the world started facing a recession, Bulgari too lost its profit margin and made heavy losses. Taking the advantage of the situation, Bernard Arnault took over the company by buying 50.4% of the company’s shares for $5.2 billion in March 2011.
14) LVMH and Hermès controversy
As a rival group, LVMH bought a significant 17.1 percent of the shares of Hermès. LVMH later increased its share to 22.3 percent by the end of 2011. The owners of Hermès saw this as a threat and as LVMH’s attempt to take over the company. Hermès is like a gold mine for LVMH. It is a family-owned business and the long line of heirs are trying their best to end this chapter of LVMH and make sure that their business is not taken over or acquired by anyone and stays in the family only.
15) Sephora, DFS and Cèline
Cèline was one of the first few brands under the LVMH belt. Cèline, Sephora and Duty-Free Shop (DFS) are brands that haven’t done so well for LVMH.
However, these brands are not seen as a failure by the LVMH management; rather, they are seen as brands that are making slower growth but are expected to thrive in the coming years.
The decision of acquiring these three brands is highly criticized as these brands are far from being profitable.
16) Louis Vuitton
Louis Vuitton, a brand established by the designer Louis Vuitton and later acquired by Bernard Arnault, has always been famous for its monogram and its accessories. Louis Vuitton was named the world’s most valuable luxury brand from 2006 to 2012. The brand Louis Vuitton was worth $25.9 billion in 2012.
17) Christian Dior
Christian Dior operated under the textile firm before it went bankrupt. Later on, Christian Dior was taken over by Bernard Arnault. Christian Dior is considered the star brand of LVMH, making profits for the brand. The brand Christian Dior deals in ready-to-wear garments, fashion accessories and cosmetics.
18) Glory To LVMH
The year of 2012 was a great year for Bernard Arnault’s luxury brand group, LVMH. The profit margin increased by 22% because of record-breaking sales at Louis Vuitton. LVMH started a joint venture with Heng Long, manufacturers of crocodile leather. The investment in the retail chain of Carrefour didn’t turn out to be a profitable venture. However, Arnault is earning more than enough, thanks to his property of Indigo Island.
19) La Tribune – A Failure
La Tribune was acquired by LVMH in the year 1993. As the business was making acquisitions in different sectors of industry, Bernard Arnault thought it would be profitable to own a publication. However, his plan backfired and the newspaper was unable to make a profit even after the investment of 150 million Euros. Bernard Arnault sold La Tribune in November 2007.
Donna Karan established DKNY in 1989. DKNY became a subsidiary of LVMH in 2001. The brand DKNY is known for its jeans and fashion accessories like handbags and watches. DKNY formal wear and shoes are standouts and have brought more revenue to the brand in the past years. In 2001, a home line was introduced by DKNY emphasizing household accessories.
21) Japan’s Economy And LVMH
The luxury goods group LVMH is known to be a success in countries around the world, especially Japan. It was brought to the company’s attention that Louis Vuitton sales are highest in Japan where approximately 85% of Japanese women own products of the brand Louis Vuitton.
22) Loss At Fendi
Fendi was acquired by LVMH in 2001. Fendi lost around 20 million euros in both 2001 and 2002. Fendi was proving to be a non-profitable venture for LVMH. In the first six months of 2003, Fendi’s turnover decreased by 6.3 percent compared to 2002. Revenue collection was falling day by day. After this, a new team to work to increase Fendi’s sales was appointed.
23) The Largest Brand Of Luxury Goods
LVMH is rated the largest brand of luxury goods and manages approximately sixty subsidiaries. LVMH keeps on acquiring established brands in order to avoid the risk of launching all-new products. LVMH owns 2,400 retail stores around the world and more than 83,000 people work for the group. LVMH is at the moment eyeing Hèrmes to take over.
Accolades – Bernard Arnault
24) The French Legion Of Honor
Bernard Arnault was awarded the title of Commander of the French Legion of Honor. The ceremony took place on February 10, 2007. This award was established on May 19, 1802, by Napoleon Bonaparte and is seen as the most prestigious award in France. It has five rankings of which Commander is the third rank.
25) Corporate Citizenship Award
Bernard Arnault is one of the most successful businesspeople who made it big in a relatively short amount of time. Arnault received the Corporate Citizenship Award in 2011 from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. This award recognizes and appreciates the successful businessman. The Corporate Citizenship Award is one of the most prestigious awards encouraging efforts of business people.
26) Honorary Knight Commander Of The Most Excellent Order Of The British Empire
In late 2012, the British recognized the efforts of Bernard Arnault, and the Prince of Wales awarded him the title of Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. This proved to be good for Arnault’s reputation after facing criticism for his application for dual nationality. The event was categorized as a private family event and took place at Clarence House, the residence of Prince Charles.
27) 56th On Powerful People List
The CEO and chairperson of LVMH, Bernard Arnault, was listed at No. 56 on the list of the Most Powerful People in Forbes Magazine. It is not hard to believe, as Arnault runs the world’s largest luxury-goods group and is said to have more than 60 brands in his group. His association with high-ranking people in government and royalty gives him enough connections to be one of the most powerful persons.
28) No. 10 Forbes Billionaire
Bernard Arnault, the CEO of LVMH, is ranked No. 10 on the Forbes list of billionaires. LVMH has been making more and more progress every day, even in the days of recession, increasing LVMH’s and thus Arnault’s wealth and earnings.
29) No. 2 Billionaire In France
As per the March 2013 issue of Forbes, Bernard Arnault has been named the second wealthiest person in France. Arnault has taken over a number of businesses, all of which are making a certain percentage of profits, and the slower brands are somehow covered by the more established brands like Louis Vuitton and Dior. Thus huge revenues are generated for the company and the CEO of course.
30) Young Creators LVMH Award
Bernard Arnault is one of the biggest fans of art and creativity. Appreciation of art and artistic skills has always been an integral part of LVMH. The LVMH Foundation introduced this award to appreciate and recognize upcoming brilliant talent. The award includes six grants for each winner.
31) The Fashion Person
Forbes Magazine honored Bernard Arnault by naming him the Fashion Person of the Year. Arnault owns the most prestigious fashion brands offered in the industry. Arnault has a unique aesthetic sense, which enables him to promote designs and brands which can be successful and fashionable. Even though Arnault has a number of designers to design his look, he always goes with his own aesthetic sense and chooses his outfit accordingly.
32) Time’s Most Influential People
In 2007, the Time Magazine listed Bernard Arnault on its list of 100 Most Influential People. Arnault is an influence on people in terms of the products of his luxury group, LVMH. Arnault is one of the most influential people because of his wealth and his connections with influential people. However, the easiest and most powerful influence of Arnault on people is in terms of his products and brands.
33) KBE But Not ‘Sir Bernard’
There were many rumors of Bernard Arnault receiving the title of “Sir” from England. This, however, proved to be wrong, because “Sir” is limited to British citizens. But Arnault was honored with the title of Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Oder of the British Empire. After this award, Arnault is allowed to use KBE after his initials.
34) Grand Officer Of The French Legion
The French Legion of Honor, one of the most prestigious awards in France, has five ranks. In 2007, Bernard Arnault was honored with the third rank, the title of Commander. On July 14, 2011, however, he was promoted to the second rank, Grand Officer of the French Legion of Honor.
35) Violins To Musicians
LVMH does charity without donating sums of money; rather, they offer people the things that they actually need. The LVMH foundation is known for loaning out violins to talented upcoming musicians. This program encourages young artists to pursue their dreams and make sure they get what they want. Prominent names like Maxim Vengerov and Laurent Korchia have used violins under this program.
36) John Galliano’s Style
John Galliano is known for his edgy style. Galliano was hired by Bernard Arnault to ensure a revival of his brand, Christian Dior. Galliano’s style, such as creating a newspaper dress and sending models down the ramp in rags, are signs of his connection to the real world where both the examples denote a hidden meaning.
37) Galliano Loses His Job
John Galliano lost his job on February 25, 2011, after making anti-Semitic comments about a woman and her husband in a Paris bar. This happened after Galliano had drunk more than usual. This matter was given a lot of attention by the media and social networking websites. In order to save face, LVMH fired Galliano.
38) From John Galliano To Raf Simons
Raf Simons replaced John Galliano on April 9, 2011. Many interviews were conducted to find the right person to replace the legendary Galliano. After extensive interviews, Simons who was working for Jil Sander at the time was selected; Simons lost his job at Jil Sander as a part of a business deal struck with an old business partner. There is a large gap between the styles of Galliano and Simons, each catering to different styles and belonging to different schools of thought.
39) Dior Accused Of Promoting Impractical Image
The brand Christian Dior was accused of promoting unrealistic and unhealthy images of women. The sizes available in Dior dresses were unable to fit even anorexic models. One of the models made these accusations. The model claimed that the dress sizes were unhealthy for celebrity models and other girls.
40) The Biography
Bernard Arnault wrote a self-biography, “The Creative Passion.” The biography proved to be a best seller in Paris and sold over 25,000 copies. The biography reveals Arnault’s secrets of success. The biography highlights his personal life and his take on money and success. Arnault’s fans have been highly inspired by his take on success. They are fascinated by his business strategies.
41) Encouraging Working Women
The Women on the Board Pledge in Europe is a pledge to encourage working women and to increase their presence in boardrooms. LVMH is one of the firms which has undertaken this great cause and has promised to increase the presence of women in its board rooms up to 30% by 2015, and by 2020 the figure is to expected to reach 40%.
42) The Louis Vuitton Foundation For Creation
The Louis Vuitton Foundation for Creation (LVFH) will have a museum and a cultural center to display the magnificent work of artists like Picasso, Yves Klein, Andy Warhol and others. It is expected to open in 2014 in Paris. The LVFC will have a restaurant and an auditorium to highlight the works of upcoming local artists. The LVFC will also promote the works of International artists.
43) Association With Albert Frere
Albert Frere, a Belgian citizen and an associate of Bernard Arnault, is known to have a joint venture of Chateau Cheval Blanc and vineyard since 1871. Albert Frere is a friend of Arnault and supported him through his application requesting Belgian citizenship.
Personal Interests of Beranrd Arnault
44) Love For Tennis
Bernard Arnault is known for his fitness and it is said that the secret to his fitness is tennis. The businessman is often seen playing the sport and is also spotted in the VIP box at many tennis matches, cheering on the players. Arnault seeks pleasure in playing tennis and regularly follows the matches, especially the French Open.
45) A Fan Of Roger Federer
Bernard Arnault’s love for tennis is well-known. Arnault is a fan of tennis and more significantly a fan of Roger Federer. It is said that the busy businessman takes out special time to watch the tennis matches of his favorite player. Arnault also at times tries to catch all the key matches at the French Open.
46) French Patronage of Art
LVMH and Bernard Arnault are big supporters of art. Arnault has built LVMH’s image as a supporter of art and talent by promoting approximately ten exhibitions such as “Le grand monde d’Andy Warhol” and “Picasso et les maîtres” and by supporting the art of exceptional artists like Yves Klein. LVMH’s biggest effort to promote art is their Young Creators LVMH Award.
47) Expert Pianist
Bernard Arnault took piano lessons as a child and is a classically trained pianist. Arnault is known to play the piano in his free time. Arnault developed this love for music following his mother’s interest. Arnault’s second wife, Hélène Mercier, is a pianist too and plays in concerts. It is said that Arnault’s love story with his second wife began with her being impressed by Arnault’s piano playing skills. Arnault is a big fan of Chopin and tries to play his compositions.
Bernard Arnault : Other Investments
48) Hotel In French Alps
Le Cheval Blanc, located in the French Alps, has a beautiful ski resort and exceptional designs to match the standards of its guests. The hotel has a luxurious interior and is decorated with animal leather and fur rugs. The hotel offers 34 rooms for guests. These rooms are very exclusive and are of very high standards. The ski chalet and the luxurious penthouse add to the beauty of the hotel.
49) Auction House Phillips de Pury & Company
Phillips de Pury & Company is an auctioneer and a firm dealing in art especially in terms of jewelry, furniture, photography and more. The company has locationss in Berlin, New York, London, Paris and other cities. Phillips de Pury & Company was under the umbrella of LVMH between 1999 and 2003, after which the company made losses and was sold off.
50) The LVMH Tower
The architectural wonder of the LVMH tower is a 24-story skyscraper located in Manhattan. The tower was opened in 1999 and functions as the U.S. head office of LVMH. The credit for designing the tower goes to Christian de Portzamparc. The LVMH tower was termed as “the best new building in New York.”
51) Investment In The New Economy
Bernard Arnault is known to have a passion for the new economy, which was basically the Internet bubble. In order to get in on Internet communication, Arnault didn’t waste any time before investing in boo.com, Libertystuff and Zebank. However, Arnault realized the side effects and the downside of this investment after the internet crash of March 2000 and the problems encountered after the attacks of 9/11. Bernard Arnault made a significant loss with this venture in Internet communication.
52) Louis Vuitton Foundation Building
Frank Gehry designed the building for the Louis Vuitton Foundation for Creation. It is a $127-million venture and is located in a large Paris park, Bois de Boulogne.
53) Setback With Dot-Com
As soon as the Internet craze entered France, the LVMH group jumped into action with a company, Europ@web, in 1999. This established LVMH as a major investor in Internet activity. However, not every venture proves to be successful and Arnault’s venture left him in a weak spot with no retreat in the sector.
54) The Yacht Business
LVMH is a luxury brand symbolizing high standards of lifestyle. To maintain that lifestyle and the image of the brand, in 2008, Bernard Arnault bought Princess yachts costing 253 million Euros to start his yacht business. Later on, Royal van Lent was also acquired for the same amount to add to the yacht business and to make it big.
Wealth of Bernard Arnault
55) Winery And Vineyards
Bernard Arnault is very fond of wine and his luxury brand group LVMH therefore owns around eleven different brands in the wine and spirit sector including Moët et Chandon, Krug, Hennessy, Chateau d’Yquem and more. Bernard loves spending vacations in areas with beautiful vineyards. Bordeaux is one of Arnault’s favorite vineyard regions.
56) Amadeus Yacht
The Amadeus was designed and built in 1969 by Germans. The billionaire Bernard Arnault now owns Amadeus. The super-yacht is a symbol of luxury and brings an edge to Arnault’s lifestyle. He has invested in the beautiful yacht with interiors by the well-known interior designer Zuretti. The Amadeus yacht spreads across 230 feet and has a powerful engine.
57) Bernard Arnault’s Estate
Bernard Arnault and his family own a number of homes in different parts of the world. They also own vineyards and yachts along with an island in the Bahamas. The most popular parts of the estate are his mansion in St. Tropez, the Cheval Blanc Hotel in the Alps and 150-year-old Chateau Cheval Blanc in Bordeaux owned by both Arnault and Albert Frere.
58) Indigo Island
Bernard Arnault bought the breathtaking Indigo Island in the Bahamas for a fortune of $35 million. The island is known as the “island paradise.” Indigo Island spreads over 135 acres and is known for the hilltop luxury villa offered to guests. Indigo Island provides hospitality and exotic food and a sense of relaxation. Indigo Island brings great business to Arnault and proves to be very profitable.
59) Net Worth of Bernard Arnault
According to the Forbes list as per March 2013, Bernard Arnault along with his empire of LVMH is worth $41 billion. This made him the second richest person in France. Arnault has been earning from his luxury brand group along with his property of Indigo Island, providing accommodation and hospitality to its guests and residents. The profit margins are high, adding to the Arnault family’s wealth.
60) Richest Man In France
The 2012 list of Forbes Magazine ranked Bernard Arnault as the richest man in France. There are inconsistencies in reports as to whether Arnault is the richest or the second richest man in France. The Forbes list as per March 2013, however, ranks Bernard Arnault as the second richest man in France.
61) Application For Belgian Citizenship
Bernard Arnault is a French citizen by birth. However, in 2012, Bernard Arnault applied for dual nationality as he applied to become a Belgian citizen. This issue raised many questions and most people believed that this was a step to protect LVMH from paying high taxes, as per the policy of the French Socialist government. The businessman made attempts at denying the allegation and ultimately promised to remain a tax-paying citizen of France.
62) Application Withdrawn
Bernard Arnault withdrew his application for Belgian citizenship in 2013. There have been rumors that the application was withdrawn because there was news of rejection of Arnault’s application. In order to save himself from the embarrassment of a turned-down request, Arnault withdrew his application.
63) Insulted By Liberation
Bernard Arnault was called a bastard in the headlines of the publication, Liberation. Arnault took this to heart and he sued the newspaper for such harsh and rude comments. This was unacceptable for the CEO of LVMH and he took action against the publication. This headline appeared in the newspaper after his application for dual nationality.
64) Criticism For Dual Nationality
People from all walks of life criticized Bernard Arnault for seeking Belgian nationality. Many people criticized him by saying that Arnault owed a lot to France as the French government helped him in acquiring the brand Christian Dior. He was criticized for only enjoying the things that ruled in his favor and as soon as he was facing something against his interest, deciding to find refuge elsewhere.
65) Sued eBay
Louis Vuitton examined eBay in 2006 and established that 90 percent of alleged Louis Vuitton products there are fake and forged. After this survey, LVMH sued eBay and won the lawsuit. eBay was ordered by the French court to pay $63 million to LVMH for the forging of their products. Other big companies like Tiffany & Co. made similar allegations on eBay.
66) DKNY Controversy
The brand DKNY, a subsidiary of LVMH, was a part of a controversy after launching one of its stores and using a photograph, without the consent of the photographer, Brandon Stanton, the founder of Humans of New York. When this came to Stanton’s knowledge, he reacted by asking DKNY to donate $100,000 to one of his summer groups. This brought massive criticism to the brand and resulted in DKNY donating $25,000 for the summer group and apologizing publicly.
67) The War Over Gucci
Gucci was under a war between the two rivals, LVMH and PPR. This war was affecting the sales of Gucci and making it difficult for the rivals to concentrate on their own brands. This “battle of the handbags” ended when a deal was struck between the two parties where both parties made a reasonable profit and PPR got the chance to make a full bid for the brand Gucci.
68) World’s Fourth Richest To 18th Richest Person
Forbes ranked Bernard Arnault as the fourth richest person in the world. However, after experiencing the brutal recession and people retreating from buying luxury goods, in 2013, Arnault was ranked the 18th richest person with a net worth of $29 billion.
Personality of Bernard Arnault
69) Arnault On Market Research
Bernard Arnault’s take on market research is very different to what marketers of today practice. Arnault believes in carrying out tests to check if the product is going to be a failure. Apart from that he does not believe in altering the product according to the tastes of a focus group as there is no point of giving people exactly what they expect. The CEO of LVMH further said that one must believe in the creator of the product and give people something that would completely shock them.
70) Reason For Going After Hèrmes
Bernard Arnault believes in creating star brands and his business sense always promotes being calm and patient even when a brand is making a loss. He believes that if a company acts recklessly and sells off the unprofitable business without properly working on it and giving it time, it is one of the most foolish moves. Arnault wants his brands to have a heritage like Hèrmes. The need for a brand with a heritage is what made Arnault target the brand.
71) Bernard Arnault Means Luxury
Bernard Arnault is a brand himself. The products under his group LVMH all shout “luxury.” Arnault is known for his takeovers of many of the luxurious and fashionable brands of the world. Arnault’s brands and lifestyle all symbolize style and luxury. People of different ages and races all look up to him as a legend who made things happen.
72) Family Bond
In his biography, “The Creative Passion,” Bernard Arnault emphasizes the value of family. Arnault claims to have breakfast with his youngest children every day. Moreover, the eldest children of Arnault also speak about the importance of family values and how they grew up following and cherishing those values.
73) Art Lover
Bernard Arnault has an immense appreciation for art and is known to be one of the biggest art collectors. His collection comprises pieces from artists including Picasso, Henry Moore, Andy Warhol and Yves Klein. Arnault’s collection is known to be very contemporary. LVMH was established as a patron of art in France because of Arnault’s love for art and creativity.
74) Arnault On Business Competition
Bernard Arnault views a business competition as tennis match where both the parties put in their best efforts to win and in the end shake hands in a friendly manner. Arnault believes in putting one’s best foot forward and winning every competitive battle but winning only by playing fairly. Moreover, win or lose, one must have enough dignity to treat the other party with respect.
75) ‘Wolf In Cashmere’
A number of competitors have called Bernard Arnault the “Wolf in Cashmere.” It signifies both Arnault’s ability to pursue cutthroat competition and his skill to seep into one’s firm and then take it over. Arnault has slowly crept into the shares of firms like Hèrmes, Louis Vuitton, Fendi and many more.
76) When The Time Is Right
Bernard Arnault highly believes that taking over and running an empire as big as his is not easy. It takes patience and the ability to wait for the right time to strike. Arnault’s most prominent quality is his patience. Due to this trait, he does not strike random deals or make hasty decisions. He waits for when the time is right and then plays his move.
77) Arnault’s View On Success
Bernard Arnault is a very practical human being and his thoughts are inspirational for millions of people because he is more than just talks and lectures. Arnauult has set an example of fulfilling one’s dream. Arnault, however, has said that “genius is not enough for success.” Arnault talks about the aesthetic sense that develops with experience and the need for patience to be a successful businessman.
Personal Life of Bernard Arnault
78) Bond Of Marriage
Bernard Arnault married Anne Dewaverin in 1973. Their marriage lasted for seventeen years after which they went their separate ways in 1990. Bernard Arnault and Anne Dewaverin have two children, a girl and a boy, Delphine Arnault and Antoine Arnault.
79) Second Marriage
Bernard Arnault remarried in 1991 to a concert-playing pianist, Hélène Mercier. She is a Canadian from the province of Quebec. Arnault has three sons from his second marriage. The couple is said to be facing problems because of Mercier’s affair with a young man.
Bernard Arnault has fathered five children. He has a daughter and a son from his first wife. His second marriage with Helene Mercier gave him three sons. His children from his first wife are both working with their father in the family business of LVMH. Antoine Arnault is working as the CEO of Berluti and his sister Delphine Arnault is the director of Dior.
81) An Affair To Remember
There are reports of an affair between Bernard Arnault and Viginie Mouzat, the fashion director at Le Figaro. The affair was all over the news and was reported in one of the leading newspapers, The Daily. It is said that this affair was triggered by the involvement of Arnault’s second wife with a younger man.
82) Business Competitors
LVMH is one of the leading luxury group brands and faces competition from two strong rivals. One is François-Henri Pinault, with a holding company, PPR, which owns YSL, Roger & Gallet, Gucci, Stella McCartney and many more. LVMH’s other competitor is Richemont, a Swiss company and owner of Cartier, Montblanc, Dunhill, Purdey and others.
83) Delphine Arnault
Delphine Arnault, Bernard Arnault’s only daughter, started of working in the family business with small fashion brands like Pucci and Loewe. Later on she worked as the HR manager of Louis Vuitton and after some time was promoted to director of Christian Dior. Delphine is said to be following her father’s footsteps and making a mark in the industry.
84) Antoine Arnault
Antoine Arnault is currently working as the CEO of Berluti. Antoine like his sister started working with smaller jobs and was later promoted to be the head of communication for Louis Vuitton. Antoine, talking about his family values, confessed that when his father gave him his first Berluti shoes the beauty of those shoes mesmerized him. Bernard Arnault raised his children by emphasizing the value of working hard which is why both his older children are working hard to keep the family business thriving.
85) Groupe Arnault
Groupe Arnault is the holding company of the Bernard Arnault family. The company is a privately owned company and has the biggest share of the leading luxury goods group of LVMH. The Groupe Arnault owns 100 percent shares of companies like Thomas Pink and Echoes whereas it owns around 11% shares of Carrefour and 50 percent of De Beers Diamond Jewelers and others.
86) Arnault And Star Brands
Bernard Arnault believes in creating star brands in his group of LVMH. Making star brands is about giving brands time to thrive, make profits and most importantly to make a place in the heart of the customers. This is most evident in Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior, which are the star brands of LVMH.
87) Celebrities Endorsing Louis Vuitton
Louis Vuitton symbolizes high standards and exclusivity. Louis Vuitton is very conscious about the image it projects which is why Louis Vuitton has used only famous and popular names in the industry. Louis Vuitton has used Madonna, Sean Connery, Jennifer Lopez, Angelina Jolie and others to target the niche market. Rappers like Wiz Khalifa and Kanye West have used the name “Louis Vuitton” in a number of their songs.
88) World’s 29th Most Valuable Brand
Louis Vuitton has been ranked as the world’s 29th most valuable brand. This brings great prestige to LVMH. Louis Vuitton is the star brand of LVMH. Louis Vuitton, though targeted to the niche market, is often regarded as every woman’s dream.
89) No. 1 On Top Ten Most Powerful Brands List
Louis Vuitton was ranked as No. 1 on the list of world’s most valuable luxury brands from 2006 until 2012. Louis Vuitton is known for making a mark and influencing people’s taste and lifestyle. Louis Vuitton ranges from handbags to clothes to travel bags. Thus, Louis Vuitton is creating a lifestyle for the people.
90) Louis Vuitton’s Association With Sofia Coppola
Sofia Coppola, the film director, producer, model and designer, is working on a new line of handbags, namely, the SC for Louis Vuitton handbag collection. This collection ensures various sizes and changes in the colors and materials of the years-old Louis Vuitton style. New colors and patterns have been incorporated in new materials and designs of handbags.
91) Positive Effect Of Globalization
Bernard Arnault views his brand to have a positive effect from globalization, as he is able to make products that reach out to people in different parts of the world. The Japanese and the Chinese people are the biggest market of Arnault’s LVMH and those markets are known to be very profitable.
92) Profit Margins In Luxury Brands
According to Bernard Arnault, it is only luxury brands which provide a big profit margin. Arnault is reported to have said that one can enjoy high profits after ensuring that the customer is getting the right product of standard quality.
93) A Profile Of Over 60 Brands
The LVMH group’s profile consists of something over 60 Brands. These businesses are all trying their best to thrive in a competitive market. Brands like Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior are the key brands of the group.
94) China And Louis Vuitton
The people of China have an undeniable love for the products of Louis Vuitton. Bernard Arnault once commented that some businesses make their products in China and sell to the rest of the world whereas at Louis Vuitton, products are made in France and then sold to China. It has been noted that Chinese people buy their favorite Louis Vuitton products from France rather than China because the prices are half in France of what they are in China.
95) Construction To Real Estate
Bernard Arnault was 27 years of age when he persuaded his father to concentrate the main revenue of their family business to make a mark in the real estate industry. It was Bernard Arnault’s idea to sell off the construction department of the firm and to provide holiday accommodation deals for other people.
96) ‘The French Donald Trump’
Bernard Arnault has been complimented by being called the Donald Trump of France. Trump like Arnault is a known and respected businessman. The similarities between the two are in terms of setting up an empire larger than life, acquiring different brands and making sure that they thrive. Trump too has an exclusive business aesthetic sense and like Arnault is the owner of a big empire.
97) Bernard Arnault EP – A Mixtape
The rapper, Soulja Boy, produced a mixtape inspired by the CEO of LVMH. The album is named after Bernard Arnault and comprises of songs like “Louis Vuitton” and more. There was a mistake in a song where Soulja Boy refers to Bernard Arnault as “Robert.”
98) No Sales For Louis Vuitton
Louis Vuitton is the star brand of LVMH and Bernard Arnault believes in keeping it that way. Arnault believes that it discourages people to buy expensive products when a product goes on sale a week after a customer has bought the same product.
99) Louis Vuitton Monogram
Since approximately 85% of Japanese women own products of Louis Vuitton, the touch of exclusivity is gone. The Louis Vuitton Monogram renders a similar look of every bag at the end of the day. This has been seen as a major concern and bags and other accessories are now being produced without a monogram of the brand Louis Vuitton.
100) Nicolas Sarkozy’s weddings
Bernard Arnault was a guest at the wedding reception of Nicolas Sarkozy, the 23rd president of France. He was also invited to the president’s second marriage to Cecilia Ciganer-Albéniz where he fulfilled the duties of a witness. The president’s second marriage however ended for uncertain reasons.