Bernard Arnault, CEO of fashion empire LVMH, has been toppled from his throne. In 2012 the man behind Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior and Céline still occupied the top slot as the richest man in the list of 200 wealthiest individuals in fashion, but he has had to pass the baton to Inditex CEO Amancio Ortega.
The owner of Zara, Bershka, Pull & Bear and Uterqüe enjoyed an increase in his fortune last year of almost 15.5 billion euros. This brings his capital to a total of 44 billion euro, with Orgeta on the fast track to becoming the world’s richest man. Telecom magnate Carlos Slim and Microsoft founder Bill Gates are the only ones still in the lead, but their companies experienced a less successful 2012 than Ortega’s Inditex.
Although Arnault’s LVMH also did well the past year, the top executive dropped to the third spot this year after reconfiguration of his net capital left him with a ‘mere’ total of 22.4 billion euros. The second position is occupied by the Brenninkmeijers, the Dutch family behind fashion chain C&A. Last year, they came in third, but this year they moved up a slot with a net capital of 26.7 billion euros.
A total of 43 British fashion entrepreneurs are included in the top 200 list. Topping the list at number 25 is Arcadia’s Sir Philip Green with a net worth of 3.8 billion euros, up from 3.2 billion euros last year. Despite the increase in capital, Green dropped one place. Michael Ashley of Sports Direct finds himself in 33rd place with a net capital of 2.7 billion euros, up 765 million euros from last year.
Other wealthy Brits on the list include Matalan’s John Hargreaves at number 41, the Ong family at number 67 with Club 21, River Island’s Bernard Lewis at number 68, the Pentland Group’s Stephen Rubin at number 77 and Fashion Manufacturing’s Richard Caring at number 93.
A newcomer to the top 50 is jeans magnate Renzo Rosso, founder of Diesel and owner of the labels Viktor & Rolf and Maison Martin Margiela. He occupies the 36th slot with a net capital of 2.3 billion euros.
The Top 200 reveals that fashion has been growing faster than ever, despite the recession. The total value of the Fashion Top 200 List of wealthiest fashion executives now amounts to 420 billion euro, an increase of 11.6 percent compared with last year.
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