Spotlight on: Bernard Arnault, Chairman, LVMH
Friday 03 February 2012
Why is the "wolf in cashmere" back in the news?
Because the luxury goods group he runs as chairman, LVMH, has revealed amazing full-year results.
Are there still enough rich people buyingmonogrammed handbags to keep him happy?
Yes. LVMH revealed a forecast-beating 22 per cent rise in 2011 operating profit yesterday, helped by rapid growth in Asia. And Mr Arnault is even positive for 2012 too.
So what exactly is LVMH?
LVMH is a huge collection of luxury goods companies spanning everything from De Beers and Tag Heuer to Christian Dior and Dom Perignon. Not to mention Louis Vuitton, Moët and Hennessy.
And is it all Monsieur Arnault's own work?
Bernard, France's richest man, was born to a wealthy family. His father, Jean Arnault, built up a real-estate business. Bernard expanded this, then ran Financière Agache, a luxury goods group – the beginning of his luxury goods empire.
But why is he a "wolf in cashmere"?
His business style could be described as ruthless. He stealthily builds up stakes in companies and later pounces, sometimes after years of stalking. Even his own accession to the throne of LVMH followed a bitter battle.
So what is his latest infatuation?
Having bought the family-owned jeweller Bulgari last year, Hermès is next on his list. Describing himself as just a "peaceful shareholder", he has built a 20.2 per cent stake, much to the upset of its owning family.
How long has he got?
Father Jean died aged 90 in 2010, and at 62 Bernard Arnault already has a succession plan: his son Antoine and daughter Delphine are on the LVMH board.
- 1 Tourist films plane's descent just metres above packed Caribbean beach
- 2 Indian woman creates 'Marriage CV' after parents put her on dating site: 'Definitely not marriage material. Won’t grow long hair, ever'
- 3 World Book Day: Boy 'excluded' from school after dressing up as Fifty Shades' Christian Grey
- 4 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
- 5 GamerGate: developer Tim Schafer provokes rage with joke about online gaming activists at industry awards
Tourist films plane's descent just metres above packed Caribbean beach
Indian woman creates 'Marriage CV' after parents put her on dating site: 'Definitely not marriage material. Won’t grow long hair, ever'
Isis 'bulldozes' Nimrud: UNESCO condemns destruction of ancient Assyrian site as a 'war crime'
The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
Westboro Baptist Church couldn't picket Leonard Nimoy's funeral because they didn't know where it was
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Elif Shafak: Turkish author warns against rise of British nationalism
Ex-head of MI6: 'We shouldn't kid ourselves that Russia is on a path to democracy'
Most people think legal tax avoidance is just as wrong as illegal tax evasion, poll suggests
iJobs Money & Business
£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join ...
£25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: A global leader operating...
£12 - £15 Hourly Rate: Jemma Gent: In this role you will report to the Head of...
£8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established early...