Home » South Africa’s richest man Johann Rupert gains $1 billion in July as investors react to Richemont’s Q1 results

South Africa’s richest man Johann Rupert gains $1 billion in July as investors react to Richemont’s Q1 results

by Eduardo C. Serrano
Johann Rupert

South Africa’s richest man Johann Rupert has seen his net worth soar by more than $1 billion in July.

The bump in his wealth brings his net worth closer to the $10-billion mark from where it dropped in April.

The increase in his net worth can be attributed to a surge in the share price and market capitalization of Swiss luxury goods holding company Richemont.

The rise in the holding’s share price was sparked by investors responding positively to its better-than-anticipated sales figures for Q1 2023.

The majority of Rupert’s fortune stems from his stake in Richemont, a luxury goods conglomerate that manages a diversified portfolio of premium brands like Chloe, Dunhill, Alaa, Cartier, and Delvaux.

The businessman, who is one of Africa’s wealthiest billionaires, saw a $1.02-billion increase in his wealth in July, as his net worth surged from $8.96 billion at the start of the month to $9.98 billion at its conclusion, according to figures compiled by Billionaires.Africa.

The billion-dollar increase in his wealth, which again brought his net worth closer to the $10-billion mark, comes after a $570-million decline in his net worth in June.

The half-a-billion-dollar drop occurred as the market value of his stakes in South African investment holding Remgro Limited and Luxembourg-based investment vehicle Reinet Investments S.C.A declined dramatically.

The surge in his net worth in July can be attributed to the positive performance of Richemont shares, as investors increased their stakes in the holding after it reported a significant increase in its total sales for the first quarter of its 2023 fiscal year.

Richemont’s total sales rose by 20 percent in the first quarter of its 2023 fiscal year, from €4.4 billion ($4.42 billion) in the same quarter of 2022 to €5.26 billion ($5.28 billion).

The double-digit increase in sales can be attributed to higher sales in the United States, Europe, and Japan in the three months leading up to June, which offset a 37-percent drop in total sales in Mainland China due to economic weakness and the impact of store closures.

Recently, UK fund manager Bluebell Capital Partners suggested that the Swiss luxury goods holding should focus on its core operations, which include jewelry and watches, as part of the move to create wealth for shareholders.

The London-based investor, which has held a multimillion-dollar stake in Richemont for nearly two years, stated that focusing on core operations like jewelry and watches could result in Richemont’s share price doubling in the medium term.

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