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1. Bernard Arnault, Chairman & CEO of LVMH (Louis Vuitton – Moët Hennessy)
Bernard Jean Étienne Arnault (better known as Bernard Arnault) is a successful French businessman who is also famous for his art collection. He was born on Saturday, 5 March, 1949. Other famous faces whose birthdays are on 5 March, include Disney channel star Sterling Knight, singer and songwriter Tom Russell, actress Eva Mendes and the Indian-American actor Aasif Mandvi.
2. Arnault Is Married To Helene Mercier, a Canadian Pianist
Bernard Arnault separated from his first wife Anne Dewavrin in 1990 whom he had married in 1973. Bernard later went on to marry Helene Mercier in the year 1991. It is a little known fact that his second wife is a Canadian Pianist who was born in Quebec, Canada.
3. Bernard Arnault Is The 15th Richest Person In The World
As reported in January 2013 by the Billionaires Index, Bernard Arnault is the 15th richest man in the world. Forbes also named Bernard as the “Fashion Person” of the year 2011.
4. Bernard Arnault Has Five Children, Two Of Which Are Working For LVMH
Bernard has five children from his two marriages. He has a daughter and a son from his first marriage. He also has three other sons from his second wife. So far his daughter and son from his first marriage, namely Delphine Arnault and Antonie Arnault, are the only children of Bernard who are a part of his well-established business. Delphine Arnault is the HR manager while son Antonie is the Head of Communications for LV, Louis Vuitton. Photo courtesy: Paris-Match.
5. His Daughter: Delphine Arnault
Delphine Arnault, the daughter of Bernard Arnault, is surely following in the footsteps of her father. She is a billionaire already and indeed one of the richest women around the globe. In 2008, she was apparently reported as the world’s richest women. Her wedding in the year 2005 to the heir of an Italian family that had a wine fortune, Alessandro Vallarino Gancia, was a big affair. However, the marriage ended in 2010. As of now, it is reported that Delphine is expecting her first child.
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6. LVMH Signed Up For The ‘Women on the Board Pledge for Europe’
Bernard’s LVMH is also one of those European firms that have pledged to raise the number of female presence in their boardrooms. The pledge “Women on the Board Pledge for Europe” seeks to make the presence of women up to at least 30% by the end of 2015 and up to 40% by the year 2020.
7. LVMH’s Bernard Arnault Withdrew His Belgian Citizenship Bid
After the 2013 budget was announced in France, Bernard Arnault came under fire as he applied for Belgian citizenship. The reason was that he would have to pay less tax as a citizen of Belgium. According to the new budget, France’s richest citizens, those who are earning more than €1million, would have to pay as much as a 75% tax. In April 2013, however, Bernard Arnault withdrew his bid for Belgian citizenship, following the criticism it caused with people in both France and Belgium (In the picture: Steve Jobs, Neelie Kroes and Bernard Arnault during a visit at the European Commission in Brussels, in 2008).
8. Bernard Keeps A Strong Bond With His Children
Bernard sure does know the importance of having a strong family bond. Bernard admitted in his biography titled “The Creative Passion” that he always has breakfast with his two youngest sons.
9. Almost 85% Of Japan’s Female Population Reportedly Own A Louis Vuitton Product
Bernard Arnault’s LVMH is a huge success in many countries, notably in Japan. It is reported that almost 85% of Japan’s female population are a proud owner of Louis Vuitton products.
10. No ‘Sales’ Or Discounted Prices For A Louis Vuitton … Ever
Sales are everywhere. You get to buy products at discounted prices during seasonal sales, holiday sales, promotional sales. However, one thing that you will never find on discount is a Louis Vuitton. Bernard Arnault star brand never goes on sale and you cannot find it at a discounted price.
11. Bernard Arnault Is A Fan Of Tennis Player Rodger Federer
Bernard Arnault loves tennis and is often seen playing tennis to keep himself physically active and fit. His favorite tennis player is none other than the Swiss legend Roger Federer. He never misses a chance to watch a tennis game at the French open and is often spotted in VIP boxes along with his family.
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12. Bernard Arnault’s Educational Background
Before Bernard Arnault became the famous and rich businessman that he is today, he was just an engineering student. He completed his Bachelor degree in Engineering from Ecole Polytechnique in the year 1971.
13. Chinese Buying Louis Vuitton Products Directly In France
Louis Vuitton is one the most profitable brands under Bernard’s LVMH. It is a surprising fact that a lot of Chinese people buy Louis Vuitton’s handbags from France instead of China. Do you know why? It is because in France the handbags are sold at half the price compared to the prices in China (allegedly). Thus, Chinese people coming to France on holiday or for whatever reason prefer to get LV handbags from there.
14. Arnault Is Also A Shareholder Of Carrefour, And Bulgari
Bernard Arnault has an approximately 11% share in the French retail giant Carrefour. Not only that, Bernard’s LVMH was able to capture 50.4% of shares of the Italian jeweler Bulgari, in 2011, which were previously family owned.
15. Chateau d’Yquem, A Top Wine From The LVMH Group
Bernard Arnault luxury group is famous for its high-end products. The oldest brand under the belt of LVMH brands is Chateau d’Yquem, a wine producer. It originated back in the year 1593. The specialty of wines from Chateau d’Yquem is their longevity. The wine is also known for its sweetness and concentration.
16. Bernard Arnault Stands For Luxury
Bernard also knows how to cash in on luxury products. One of his most interesting quotes is as follows: “My relationship to luxury goods is really very rational. It is the only area in which it is possible to make luxury profit margins.”
17. Protection Of Private Life
Bernard Arnault is said to be having an affair with fashion director of Le Figaro, Virginie Mouzat. The news was published in The Daily. It was also reported that this affair is a result of Helene, Bernard’s second wife’s, infidelity with a younger man. The news was later taken off for reasons unknown.
18. Frequent Guest At Weddings
Bernard Arnault did not only have his presence at the wedding ceremony of the 23rd President of France Nicolas Sarkozy, but he was also the witness to the President’s second marriage to Cécilia Ciganer-Albéniz. The marriage ended when his wife apparently ran away with her lover.
19. Arnault Is The Proud Owner Of Indigo Island, Worth $35 Million
Bernard Arnault is not only the owner of a luxury group, he is also a proud owner of an Island. He owns the Indigo Island, which is worth $35 Million. The island is located in the Bahamas. It is spread over 133 acres and has a number of hilltop villas, beaches and of course his favorite, tennis courts.
20. Bernard Arnault Is Also The Owner Of The Yacht ‘Amadeus’
With such a big luxury group under your belt, you are bound to own luxury goods too. Just like Bernard who is a proud owner of Amadeus yacht embedded with all the fashionable luxuries. The yacht has seen the likes of U2 singer Bono and British political figure Tony Blair on board, along with their families.
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