Bill Gates just lost his ranking as the world's 2nd-richest person

Bernard Arnault

Bernard Arnault

LVMH, Arnault's luxury-goods maker, advanced to a record Tuesday and pushed his net worth to $107.6 billion and ahead of Gates by more than $200 million. It's the first time the Microsoft founder has fallen below second place at least in the seven year history that we've been ranking the richest people on the globe. Just last month, Arnault became the third person to join the $100 billion club, and in 2019 alone his net worth has risen $39 billion. Other French billionaires, including Kering's Francois-Henri Pinault and L'Oréal's Francoise Bettencourt Meyers, have benefited as well, but none as much as Arnault.

Arnault, 70, made headlines earlier this year when he committed $224 million to the rebuilding of fire-ravaged Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.

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According to Bloomberg, Arnault's fortune stems from his 97.4% stake in Christian Dior, which also owns 41% of LVMH, the parent company of Louis Vuitton, Givenchy, Fendi, and Celine.

Bezos, Arnault, and Gates now make up the only three members of the $100 Billion Club, so hopefully they can keep any internal competition between them on a civil and friendly basis. He got into the luxury game in 1984 when he bought a textile company that owned Christian Dior, and four years later he bought a controlling stake in LVMH. In addition to his work in the world of luxury fashion and alcohol, he's known for having amassed an impressive collection of art, including works by famous artists like Jean-Michel Basquiat, Pablo Picasso, and Andy Warhol. CNN notes that if it weren't for his philanthropic giving-the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has donated $35 billion to causes worldwide-Gates would be atop both Bloomberg and Forbes' richest billionaires' lists.

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