Bernard Arnault is currently featured in third place on the rich list and is the wealthiest European on the list, currently worth over $85 billion. He is the Chair and CEO of LVMH and his business empire stretched to 70 different brands, including having bought nearly all of Christian Dior, which stretched his fortune significantly.
Arnault started off in business on the right footing, working first for his father’s successful construction company, although it was Bernard who convinced the family to switch the business from construction to property more generally, specialising in holiday accommodation and growing the company as a result.
It was in the mid-1980s that Arnault began to get involved in the luxury goods that he would become known for. In 1984 he acquired Financière Agache, a company specialising in luxury items and in turn, as CEO, got involved with a struggling company called Boussac Saint-Frères which owned Christian Dior.
LVMH was formed in the late 1980s, merging two separate companies. Arnault was the first shareholder, spending $600million on 13.5% of the business. Not a small amount! Under his leadership over time he has transformed the company and it is now one of the largest luxury goods companies in the world.
Some of Arnault’s other investments
You might not know that Arnault owns a percentage of Netflix, bought in 1999; as well as 10.69% of France’s largest supermarket Carrefour. He also owns a yacht business: Princess Yachts.
Arnault is a notable collector of art and owns pieces by Picasso, Andy Warhol and Henry Moore. He is married to a Canadian pianist called Hélène Mercier-Arnault and they have three sons. He also has a son and a daughter with his first wife Anne Dewavrin.
Not everybody puts having money at the top of their priority list. Many of us simply want to find contentment in what we do and we don’t need riches and riches to be satisfied. However, money is still important in everyday life and if you don’t have it this can be a problem. If you asked 100 people what would be on their list of things to achieve in life if they could do or have anything ‘having a million dollars’ or ‘becoming a millionaire’ would surely feature on the lists of many.
What do you need to do though to stride towards your first million dollars?
1) Invest, don’t spend
How tempting is that pair of shoes, or that fancy new phone or that new car? Very? Are you the kind of person who will spend regardless? Think again. If you want to build up your cash reserves you need to save and invest in sensible things that will hold their value. This will move you towards that million dollar aim far more quickly than you might get there otherwise.
2) Understand what other people want and help them achieve that
Often if you help others get what they want they will want to help you in some way and fortune will come your way in the end.
3) Choose one thing, master it and do it better than anyone else
Those who are the most financially successful tend to be a master in that one thing that they have specialised in. They do it better than anyone else and therefore their skill set or product is in demand. Fortune takes time to build up. Use that time wisely.
4) Build a routine and plan towards success
If you find a strategy that works and do it again and again and again then you will see progress. Fortune takes time and hard work but if you stick at it in a particular way then success will soon be with you.
5) Understand your progress
In order to improve your financial situation you need to understand what it is that you are doing well (and do more of that) and what you are doing not so well (and do less of that). It’s like going to the gym and tracking our weight. We then know how to improve our situation and when we do well it also spurs us on to do more.