'Indeed, with all these stories, the group had a plane and we sold it. The result now is that no one can see where I go because I rent planes when I use private planes.'
The world's second-richest man, Bernard Arnault, revealed that he has sold his private jet following people's attempts to track the aircraft on social media. Arnault, the chairman and CEO of luxury goods company LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, shared on Monday that he has now started renting private planes to travel. The 73-year-old billionaire made the revelation in an interview with the LVMH-owned radio station Radio Classique, reports Bloomberg. Over the past year, a number of Twitter accounts that track and share publicly available flight data to point out the pollution they cause have sprung up online. They've publicized the travel activity of many celebrities, including the likes of Elon Musk and Taylor Swift.
Bernard Arnault is the world's second richest man with an estimated net worth of €140 billion 💰— Euronews Green (@euronewsgreen) October 18, 2022
He has sold his private jet after every flight was tracked by Twitter climate activists.
In full 👇https://t.co/Rw5rEYGZuO
According to Business Insider, @i_fly_Bernard and @laviondebernard are two of the most popular accounts that tracked Arnault's flight data. Despite only being about six months old, the accounts have a combined following of almost 100,000 users. The LVMH boss appears to have made the switch from owning a private jet to renting them as and when needed several weeks ago. In September, @laviondebernard tweeted about the billionaire's lack of recent flight data, several weeks after reportedly noting that the company had deregistered its Bombardier Global 7500 aircraft in France.
Bernard Arnault, the world’s second-richest man, has sacrificed the comfort of his ultra-luxury jet and switched to rented aircraft to escape the tracking of his flights on social media https://t.co/j0x9TFzQaz— The Times and The Sunday Times (@thetimes) October 18, 2022
"The LVMH private jet has not been registered in France since September 1, 2022. Still no word from either Bernard Arnault or LVMH on the subject of private jets," the account tweeted on September 10. "So Bernard, are you hiding?" Addressing the matter in his interview with Radio Classique this week, the French tycoon said: "Indeed, with all these stories, the group had a plane and we sold it. The result now is that no one can see where I go because I rent planes when I use private planes."
Le jet privé de LVMH n'est plus immatriculé en France depuis le 1er septembre 2022.— laviondebernard (@laviondebernard) September 10, 2022
Toujours aucun mot de Bernard Arnault ni de LVMH sur le sujet des jets privés.
Alors Bernard, on se cache ? pic.twitter.com/dt5Oajw8zK
According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Arnault has a net worth of almost $133 billion, surpassing Jeff Bezos as the world's second-richest man. Meanwhile, his son, Antoine Arnault, defended the use of private jets while appearing on a television show last week. "This plane is a work tool," he reportedly said on France 5's C à Vous. "Our industry is hyper-competitive." He added that a private plane gives executives an edge in the race to be first to a new product or deal. He also revealed that LVMH sold its plane over the summer. While appearing alongside his father in the radio interview on Monday, Antoine explained that there's another business reason for not wanting the company's travels to be public information. "It's not very good that our competitors can know where we are at any moment," he said. "That can give ideas, it can also give leads, clues."
F-HTTL | Total Energies | 28.09.2022 | Bangor -> New York | 1h13min | ~ 2.0 t CO2. pic.twitter.com/1qgBM0clUo— laviondebernard (@laviondebernard) September 30, 2022