Johann Rupert: How South Africa’s Richest Man Lost $3.4 Billion in Just 10 Weeks

After a solid start to the year, South Africa’s wealthiest individual, Johann Rupert, has seen his net worth plummet during the last ten weeks.

The billionaire’s fortunes have been eroded by persistent selling pressures in the shares of Richemont, the Swiss luxury goods conglomerate where he serves as chairman.

According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, which tracks the wealth of the world’s most affluent individuals, Rupert’s net worth has dropped by $3.4 billion in the last ten weeks. The drop is linked to the continued reduction in the market value of his significant interest in Richemont.

Rupert’s net wealth has dropped from a staggering $14.4 billion to $11 billion since July 14, about 10 weeks ago. This dramatic dip has cut his year-to-date wealth gains from $3.5 billion to $122 million in just 70 days.

His wealth has recently decreased by $3.3 billion due to the continuous reduction in the market value of his 10.18 percent share in Richemont. Richemont’s shares have dropped from CHF153.95 ($170.05) on July 14 to CHF115.2 ($127.25) at the time of writing.

Rupert owns a major stake in Richemont through Compagnie Financiere Rupert. His holding consisted of 6,263,000 Richemont “A” shares and 522,000,000 Richemont “B” shares as of March 31, 2023, representing 10.18 percent of the company’s capital and a controlling majority of 51 percent of its voting rights.

With the recent decline in Richemont shares, Johann Rupert’s stake in the company is now worth $7.87 billion. Furthermore, his stakes in Reinet Investments and Remgro are worth $1.01 billion and $384 million, respectively.

Despite this recent setback, Rupert remains South Africa’s wealthiest person, surpassing fellow South African magnate Nicky Oppenheimer.

He is the second-richest person in Africa and ranks 174th among the world’s richest people, with a net worth of $11 billion.


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