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Francois Pinault

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Francois Pinault is the founder of Kering, a designer and maker of luxury goods. The Paris-based business had revenue of 20.4 billion euros ($21.4 billion) in 2022 from brands such as Gucci and Yves St. Laurent. The billionaire also owns the Christie’s auction house and has a personal art collection of more than 2,000 works.

The majority of Pinault’s wealth is derived from his family’s 41% stake in Kering, a publicly traded seller of luxury-goods. His son Francois-Henri is chief executive officer of the company. His stake is held through the family’s investment vehicle Groupe Artemis, which is controlled by Pinault and other members of his family, according to the company’s 2022 annual report. Pinault is credited with all of his family’s stake in Bloomberg’s calculation because he’s the founder.

Pinault is credited with a 29% stake in sports apparel company PUMA, following a spin-off from Kering in May 2018, according to the 2022 annual report.

Groupe Artemis also owns closely held auction house Christie’s and it’s valued using calculated annual revenue for 2022 based on reported sales results and the transaction multiple from Patrick Drahi’s 2019 Sotheby’s takeover.

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Groupe Artemis had 1.3 billion euros ($1.4 billion) of bonds and loans outstanding as of March 2023, according to data compiled by Bloomberg, and the debt is represented as a liability.

The value of his cash investments is based on an analysis of dividends, insider transactions, taxes and market performance. His other assets include an art collection that contains more than 2,000 works, vineyards and cruise-line operator Ponant.

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Nazanine Ravai, a spokeswoman for the family, declined to comment on Pinault’s net worth calculation.


Francois Pinault was born in the village of Les Champs-Geraux in France’s northwest region of Brittany. He attended high school in the city of Rennes before dropping out at age 16, frustrated with classmates who, he claims, mocked his rural accent.

Pinault went to work at his father’s lumber mill. Eleven years later, he started his own wood business, focusing on buying and selling lumber — and then lumber companies. In the 1990s, he expanded his focus, buying French department store chain Printemps in 1992, followed a year later by Bordeaux winery Chateau Latour.

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He bought mail-order catalog company La Redoute in 1994, merging it with Printemps to create Pinault-Printemps-Redoute, which was renamed PPR. By 1999, after successfully battling rival billionaire Bernard Arnault for control of Gucci, PPR was the third-largest luxury goods company in the world, laying claim to such brands as Yves Saint Laurent and Balenciaga.

Through Groupe Artemis, the family’s wholly owned investment vehicle that Pinault set up in 1992, he owns the Bretagne soccer team Stade Rennais and auction house Christie’s International, which he took private in 1998 for $1.2 billion.

PPR was renamed Kering in June 2013, and is led by Pinault’s son Francois-Henri, after the billionaire decided to focus to art. He abandoned plans in 2005 to build a museum outside Paris for his 2,000-piece collection, and turned instead to Italy. His Pinault Foundation now operates two museums in renovated Venice landmarks, Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana.


  • 1952 Drops out of high school at age 16.
  • 1963 Starts own lumber business in city of Rennes.
  • 1992 Acquires French department store chain Printemps.
  • 1994 Buys retailer La Redoute, merges with Printemps, creating PPR.
  • 1998 Purchases auction house Christie’s for $1.2 billion.
  • 1999 Buys 42 percent stake in Gucci, diluting stake of rival, LVMH.
  • 2001 PPR pays $2 billion for LVMH’s 20 percent stake in Gucci.
  • 2006 Opens inaugural show at his Venice museum, Palazzo Grassi.
  • 2013 Changes official name of PPR to Kering.

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