South African billionaire businessman Johann Rupert recorded a significant boost in his net worth in October as the market value of publicly traded companies, including Richemont, his luxury goods holding, rebounded during the month after falling to their lowest level in September.
According to data tracked by Billionaires.Africa, Rupert, who is the richest billionaire in South Africa and the second-wealthiest businessman on the African continent, trailing only Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote, increased his net worth by $220 million in October, from $8.32 billion to $8.54 billion.
The multimillion-dollar bump in his fortune in October came after he suffered a $1.05-billion loss in September as a result of the decline in the market value of his stakes in Richemont and South African investment holding Remgro Limited.
As one of the richest businessmen in Africa, Rupert derives the majority of his $8.54-billion wealth from his 9.14-percent stake in Richemont, a luxury goods company that owns a diverse portfolio of premium brands including Chloe, Dunhill, Alaa, Cartier, and Delvaux.
The market value of his stake in the luxury goods company increased from $5.84 billion to $5.9 billion in October alone thanks to a single-digit increase in the company’s share price.
As of press time on Nov. 1, Richemont shares were trading at CHF102.15 ($102.33) per share on the SIX Swiss Exchange, 4.3-percent higher than the bourse’s opening price this morning.
Despite recent gains in Rupert’s net worth, his year-to-date wealth loss exceeds $3 billion, and shares in his luxury goods company are down more than 25 percent year to date.
Richemont in August decided to sell a 50.7-percent stake in Yoox Net-a-Porter, an Italian online fashion retailer, to Farfetch and Emirati tycoon Mohamed Alabbar as part of its strategy to increase its valuation and return value to shareholders.
The move marks a watershed moment in the debate over measures that could boost Richemont’s valuation, as many institutional investors believe the Swiss holding’s market capitalization is lower than that of its industry peers, such as French luxury goods conglomerate LVMH and Hermes.