Frenchman Gérard Wertheimer, co-owner of Chanel, tops the richest in Switzerland


His colossal fortune was estimated between 38 and 39 billion Swiss francs this year by the magazine Bilan.

Frenchman Gérard Wertheimer who owns with his brother the Chanel luxury house, rises to the top of the largest fortunes in Switzerland, ahead of the heirs of the Swiss pharmaceutical group Roche, according to the ranking of the magazine Bilan published on Friday. This magazine, which publishes a ranking of the 300 largest fortunes in Switzerland each year, estimates that of Gérard Wertheimer between 38 and 39 billion Swiss francs (an equivalent amount in euros) in the face of the sharp rebound in sales in the luxury sector. past year.

In 2021, sales of the haute couture house climbed 27% compared to 2019, before the shock of the pandemic, to 15.6 billion dollars, leading to a revaluation of the Chanel house, explains the Swiss magazine. The heritage of Gérard Wertheimer, who resides in the canton of Geneva, and his brother Alain Wertheimer, based in the United States, also encompasses other assets, such as racehorses and prestigious wine chateaux. With this reassessment, Gérard Wertheimer steals first place in the ranking from the German Klaus-Michael Kühne, heir to one of the founders of the transport and logistics group Kuehne + Nagel, whose fortune had swelled the previous year.

A colossal fortune

Its fortune has been revised downwards, to around 23 to 24 billion francs, against 29.5 billion in 2021 according to Bilan estimates, taking into account the decline in the stock market prices of Kuehne + Nagel and the German shipowner Hapag-Lloyd, in which he also has a stake. In 2021, their prices had soared with tensions in freight and disruptions in supply chains. With a fortune that the magazine estimates between 30 and 31 billion francs, the Hoffmann, Oeri and Duschmalé families, which include the heirs of the pharmaceutical giant Roche, rank second.

The Italian Aponte family, at the head of the maritime transport group Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) which took over logistics activities in Africa from the Bolloré group in March, recorded the strongest growth in the ranking. She climbed to fifth place with a fortune estimated by the magazine at around 19 to 20 billion francs. The Armenian-Russian-Finnish billionaire Gennady Timchenko, considered close to Vladimir Putin, however lost four places to return to ninth place, part of his assets being frozen following sanctions after the invasion of Ukraine. The magazine estimates his fortune between 14 and 15 billion francs.



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