Louis Vuitton is a high-end designer fashion brand known for its longevity and prestige. Those who value the quality and ascribed status of owning Louis Vuitton can shop with confidence that authentic LV products are made with attention to detail and expert crafting. The business has a rich and storied history. With sales that remain constant, the owner of the company is one of the richest people on the planet, but who is the owner of Louis Vuitton?
A brief history of the Louis Vuitton brand
Louis Vuitton began his work making luggage for the very rich including royal patrons in the early 1800s. After completing customized traveling crates for his clientele, Mr. Vuitton launched his own brand in 1854. He was the founder and owner of the Louis Vuitton brand. Since that time the company has evolved and expanded in its product lines. The line of luggage provides a broad range of model choices in sets and all sizes using new and improved materials and technology to ensure premium performance for the high-end brand. Handbags and other accessory lines were also added to the products list. Most recently, the Louis Vuitton brand entered the technology arena offering headphones/earbuds that sell for more than $1,100 per set. The company was passed on to relatives after the death of its founder while increasing in value.
The current owner of the Louis Vuitton empire
According to Business Insider, the current owner of Louis Vuitton is LVMH which is an acronym for Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE. The ticker symbol for the publicly owned company is OTC: LVMUY. In 1987 Moet Hennessey, a producer of wines and spirits merged with Louis Vuitton to create LVMH. The chairman of the board for LVMH is Bernard Arnault. Mr. Arnault is one of the richest men in the world with an estimated net worth of $113 billion. Under his leadership of LVMH, the company has grown to become the largest conglomerate of luxury goods. Acquisitions through the years have built a huge empire in the luxury goods niche with ownership of 17 other high-end companies including Louis Vuitton
Companies owned by LVMH
The Louis Vuitton brand is considered to be a subsidiary of LVMH and technically it is owned by the publicly held conglomerate. It is a massive conglomerate that boasts ownership of 6 business groups covering wines and spirits, perfumes and cosmetics, selective retailing, watches and jewelry, fashion and leather goods, and others. Some of the most prestigious luxury companies are owned by LVMH including Givenchy, Louis Vuitton, TAG Heuer, and most recently, Tiffany's.
Who owns LVMH?
There isn't just one owner of LVMH, but the person who owns the largest share is none other than Bernard Arnault. He has a controlling interest in half of the company. Arnault was named the fourth richest person in the world a few years ago. On top of that, he is the richest man in all of his native country France. The average yearly revenue for LVMH is about $59 billion for 2019 with ups and downs depending on the economy on any given year. The pandemic brought that figure down around $20 billion but it's still a value proposition with decent rebounds after a lull in sales.
Arnault's other impressive acquisitions
Bernard Arnault is also the owner of Le Bon Marche Rive Gauche. This company has a rich and storied history that dates back to its founding in 1852. He also acquired Agache-Willot-Boussac, renaming it Financiere Agache. he did sell some of the assets of the latter but retained Le Bon Marche, incorporating it into the LVMH group in 1987. Le Bon Marche has earned the distinction of being named one of the first department stores in the world with its origins in Paris, France. The retailer specializes in high-end retail goods with carefully chosen merchandise.
Louis Vuitton is stable and protected
According to CNBC, Bernard Arnault has increased his personal wealth to the tune of $7 billion as stocks soared in his Covid 19 vaccine producer Pfizer. This jumped his net worth from $113 billion to $137 billion. He also jumped in posturing from the 4th richest person in the world to the second. Arnault is just one of five billionaires in the entire world who has amassed a fortune that exceeds more than $100 billion. He has made multiple wise investments during his lifetime.
His latest acquisition
LVMH currently owns Christian Dior, and Moet and Chandon, and set its sights on Tiffany. The initial agreement was for a price of $16 billion, however, a legal battle over the purchase price ensued over the past year. Thi delayed the acquisition, but eventually, the two worked it out and they agreed on a price that was covered by $400 million. Tiffany's currently has a valuation of $14.5 billion, according to ABC News.
Bernard Arnault is climbing the ladder of the richest billionaires. He's moved up a few notches and displaced a few of the very rich in posturing. The leader in this exclusive group of the richest people in the world is Jeff Bezos who has an estimated net worth of $184 billion. Bill Gates was previously the second richest billionaire that was unseated with his net worth of $119 billion. Gates was kicked to the third position when Arnault's net worth increased. Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg are battling for fourth with an equal net worth of $103 million.
Bernard Arnault is the owner of Louis Vuitton and many other luxury retailers. He's shrewd at business and has made some sound investments. He has become one of the biggest names in the high-end retail luxury market. He was wise to retain a controlling share of interest in LVMH as it has helped to make him the second richest man in the world today.
Written by Lily Wordsmith
Read more posts by Lily Wordsmith