With a family fortune of $92.0 billion, Bernard Arnault, who runs and controls the French luxury goods conglomerate LVMH, has become the world’s third-richest man, overtaking the legendary investor Warren Buffet, according to the latest ranking of the world’s billionaires compiled by Forbes.
Evidently, LVMH has been weathering the coronavirus storm better than the financial empire created by Buffet through his investment vehicle, Berkshire Hathaway, which now has a net worth of $76.3 billion. Between Jan. 27, the start of the Chinese Lunar New Year, which more or less coincided with the Coronavirus spread, and March 31, LVMH’s stock price declined by 15.7 percent, compared with a drop of 20.0 percent for Berkhire Hathaway and a dip of 23.7 percent in the Dow Jones Industrial Average.
The 83-year-old François Pinault, who controls with his family the other major French luxury goods conglomerate, Kering, ranks 26th on Forbes’ list with a fortune of $34.5 billion. He comes right after the family of Phil Knight, founder and major shareholder of Nike, which has been assessed a value of $35.4 billion. The ranking continues to be topped by Amazon’s founder, CEO and president, Jeff Bezos, with a net worth of $124.7 billion, followed by Microsoft’s co-founder, Bill Gates, at $104.1 billion.