BACK ON TOP: Luxury titan Bernard Arnault is again the world’s richest man, according to Forbes. The chairman and chief executive officer of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton bumped Jeff Bezos from the top slot with a net worth of $199.9 billion, topping the Amazon founder and chairman’s $194.9 billion. Tesla founder Elon Musk was in third with a net worth of $185.5 billion.
While Bezos has been busy blasting himself into space via his Blue Origin rocket, Amazon’s shares haven’t been quite as lofty of late, slumping on Friday to $3,344.94 after hitting a one-month high on July 12 of $3,761. LVMH’s shares, meanwhile, have gone in the other direction, and on Friday rose slightly to close at 698.2 euros. The shares have been driven by LVMH’s strong results for the first half, driven by its fashion and leather goods brands Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior and buoyant demand for luxury goods in Asia and the U.S. as well as recovery in Europe. Arnault’s empire encompasses 75 brands ranging from Dom Pérignon Champagne and Cheval Blanc wine to the La Samaritaine and Bon Marché department stores and Bulgari jewelry.
And while Arnault might not be donning a jumpsuit, cowboy boots and a cowboy hat to go into space, he does have a new blue bauble he can call his very own: iconic jeweler Tiffany, which LVMH acquired last year for $15.8 billion and is in the process of buffing up. Clearly the stock market prefers diamonds to star dust.