Billionaire Owner of Gucci, Saint Laurent, Etc Pledges €100 Million to Rebuild Notre Dame
French billionaire François-Henri Pinault has just announced his family will donate 100 million euros to help rebuild the Notre Dame Cathedral, which was heavily damaged by a massive fire on Monday, April 15.
"My father (François Pinault) and I have decided to release from Artemis funds a sum of 100 million euros to participate in the effort that will be necessary for the complete reconstruction of Notre Dame," the art patron and philanthropist said in a statement, and as earlier reported by AFP.
"Mon père (François Pinault) et moi même avons décidé de débloquer dès à présent sur les fonds d'Artemis une somme de 100 millions d'euros pour participer à l'effort qui sera nécessaire à la reconstruction complète de Notre Dame", écrit François-Henri Pinault— William Plummer (@PlummerWilliam) April 15, 2019
Henri Pinault is the chairmain and CEO of the Kering group, one of the world's largest luxury goods companies, which owns Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, Brioni, Christopher Kane, Tomas Maier, Boucheron, Girard-Perregaux, and Kering Eyewear, among many others; and the president of Groupe Artemis, the holding company that controls the assets of the Pinault family, which owns the auction house Christie's and several wineries.
Salma Hayek and Henri Pinault
He is currently married to actress Salma Hayek, who has also expressed her sadness after the fire engulfed the cathedral. "Like many others, it is with horror and sadness that I watch the beauty of Notre-Dame go up in smoke... Paris I love you," she posted on Instagram.
Pinault's statement came after French President Emmanuel Macron announced he is set to seek funding for the 850-year-old cathedral's restoration. Macron also expressed his devastation over what had occured. "I am sad to see this part of us burn tonight," he wrote in a tweet.
Notre-Dame is aflame. Great emotion for the whole nation. Our thoughts go out to all Catholics and to the French people. Like all of my fellow citizens, I am sad to see this part of us burn tonight. https://t.co/27CrJgJkJb— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) April 15, 2019
Another one of fashion's biggest billionaire's, Bernard Arnault of LVMH, followed suit and doubled the pledge of Pinault. He and his family will be donating 200 million euros to also help rebuild Notre Dame.
The LVMH group issued a statement: "The Arnault family and the LVMH group would like to show their solidarity ata this time of national tragedy, and are joining up to help rebuild this extraordinary cathedral, which is a symbol of France, of its heritage and of French unity," reports Reuters.
As the world's largest luxury goods company, Bernard Arnault's LVMH has a vast portfolio of brands and subsidiaries. His brands include Dom Pérignon, Sephora, Céline, Christian Dior, Fendi, Givenchy, Loewe, Louis Vuitton, Rimowa, Bulgari, and Benefit among others.
Meanwhile, many world leaders have also reacted to the tragedy, with former U.S. President Barack Obama posting one of the most moving messages on Twitter: "It’s in our nature to mourn when we see history lost – but it’s also in our nature to rebuild for tomorrow, as strong as we can."
Notre Dame is one of the world’s great treasures, and we’re thinking of the people of France in your time of grief. It’s in our nature to mourn when we see history lost – but it’s also in our nature to rebuild for tomorrow, as strong as we can. pic.twitter.com/SpMEvv1BzB— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) April 15, 2019