French fashion tycoon Bernard Arnault, owner of Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy, surpassed Amazon’s founder Jeff Bezos to become the world’s richest person on May 24, with an estimated net worth of 186.3 billion dollars, according to Forbes.
The luxury group, which owns Fendi, Christian Dior and Givenchy, has seen its sales roar back from the pandemic, with hefty contributions from Chinese and U.S. shoppers. It reported a 32-percent sales growth to 17 billion dollars in the first quarter of this year.
Arnault’s fortune has jumped over 110 billion dollars in the past 14 months, as LVMH stock has been soaring. The stock climbed up 0.93 percent in 24 hours at the close of trading on May 24.
The 72-year-old chairman and chief executive held 47.5 percent of LVMH’s shares, according to the group’s annual report in 2020. He has spent about 538 million dollars in recent months buying more shares back, as the price surges.