Bernard Arnault, a fashion industry executive from France with a net worth of $211 billion, has surpassed the Tesla founder and CEO of Twitter to become the wealthiest person on Forbes' 2023 billionaires list.
According to Forbes, the CEO of LVMH, who is 74 years old and oversees a portfolio of more than 70 luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Givenchy, Tiffany's, Marc Jacobs, Sephora, and Fenty Beauty, has experienced the biggest increase in net worth among billionaires this year, adding an impressive $53 billion to his fortune over the past 12 months.
Last year, Arnault surpassed the 51-year-old CEO of SpaceX, claiming the top spot on the list with $31 billion more than Musk.
For the past three years, he has been third on the Billionaires list behind Musk and Amazon founder Jeff Bezos.
The Frenchman first made the Forbes list in 1997 when he was worth $3.1 billion and rose through the ranks in the years following until he hit the top five richest people in 2011.
He has been the head of LVMH for roughly three decades and helped grow the luxury goods company’s revenue from $4 billion in 1989 to $86 billion last year, according to the outlet. Stock in the company soared 35% over the past year.
Arnault has maintained loyal customers through long-standing and respected design houses like Louis Vuitton and Dior while expanding the company with new modern brands like Rhianna’s Fenty Beauty which launched in 2019.
In January, the septuagenarian appointed his 47-year-old daughter, Delphine Arnault, as the CEO of Dior, as he prepares for succession among his five children.