“Sustainable development is a fundamental break that’s going to reshuffle the entire deck. There are companies today that are going to dominate in the future simply because they understand that.” – François-Henri Pinault
François-Henri Pinault is a French businessman who has made a significant impact in the luxury fashion industry. Born on May 28, 1962, Pinault is the chairman and CEO of Kering, a retail conglomerate that he transformed into a luxury fashion group. Under his leadership, Kering has become one of the world’s largest luxury goods companies, owning iconic fashion brands such as Gucci, Saint Laurent, and Balenciaga that are included on The 20 Most Prestigious Luxury Brands of 2023.
Pinault’s success in the fashion industry is not surprising, given his family’s history in business. His father, François Pinault, founded PPR, the predecessor of Kering, a luxury goods company, which started as a wood and building materials company before diversifying into retail. François-Henri Pinault took over the family business in the early 2000s and has since been instrumental in expanding the company’s luxury fashion portfolio.
Despite his success, Pinault is known for keeping a low profile and rarely giving interviews. However, his personal life has made headlines, particularly his marriage to Mexican-American actress Salma Hayek. The couple, who have been married since 2009, have a daughter together and are known for their philanthropic work, including their contributions to rebuilding Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris after the 2019 fire.
The Birth of the CEO of Kering
His Early Life and Education
François-Henri Pinault was born on May 28, 1962, in Rennes, France, to a wealthy family. His father, François Pinault, founded the business in 1963 under the name Pinault SA. François-Henri Pinault was the second of three children.
He went to school for business management. Pinault completed HEC Business School, and he joined Pinault in 1987. Kering revealed that Kering holds senior positions in several operations subsidiaries of the firm, including as chairman of Artemis in 2003.
After completing his studies, François-Henri Pinault joined his family’s business. He started his career at Pinault-Printemps-Redoute (PPR), the retail conglomerate, in 1987.
He and his family own prominent fashion brands Gucci, Stella McCartney, Alexander McQueen and Yves Saint Laurent. But that’s not all: The Pinault family runs four wineries, three French publications and auction house Christies.
Career at PPR/Kering
François-Henri Pinault is a French businessman and the CEO of Kering, a luxury goods holding company that was formerly known as PPR (Pinault-Printemps-Redoute). Pinault began his career at PPR in 1987, working in the company’s timber trading division. He later became the head of PPR’s mail order business, La Redoute, and played a key role in expanding the company’s e-commerce operations.
Come 2003, Pinault became the CEO of PPR’s luxury goods division, which included brands such as Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, and Bottega Veneta. Under his leadership, the division underwent a major restructuring, divesting non-core brands and focusing on high-end fashion and accessories. Over the next decade or so, Pinault worked to reshape PPR into a luxury and sportswear conglomerate by jettisoning some of the unsexy branches of the business — wood trading and electrical distribution — and selling off its retail operations, including a department store brand and a mail-order business
This strategy proved successful, and PPR’s luxury goods division became one of the leading players in the global luxury market.
He became a CEO at 40
In 2005 Pinault, subsequently 40, assumed Kering’s CEOship from his mother. He knew a miracle had come, but it didn’t happen so quickly. He has an ambitious plan to create sustainable, inventive companies that will serve the needs and desires of the fashion industry and beyond. Business is the best way of contributing to a better world. We have an important role in supporting sustainable development.
Today, Kering is one of the largest luxury goods companies in the world, with a portfolio of brands that includes Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga, and Alexander McQueen, among others. Pinault is widely credited with transforming the company into a global leader in luxury fashion and accessories.
François-Henri Pinault’s Career Achievements
His influential decisions include leading the transformation of PPR’s luxury goods division into a global leader in luxury fashion and accessories, acquiring additional luxury brands such as Balenciaga and Alexander McQueen, and focusing on sustainability and ethical practices in other businesses in the luxury goods industry. Under his leadership, Kering has become a leader in these areas, with a strong commitment to reducing its environmental impact and promoting social responsibility.
Awards and Recognition
François-Henri Pinault has received several awards and recognition for his contributions to the luxury goods industry and his commitment to sustainability. In 2018, he was named one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world. He has also received the Corporate Citizenship Award from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the BNP Paribas Prize for Individual Philanthropy. In addition, Kering has been recognized for its sustainability efforts, including being named the most sustainable luxury company in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for three consecutive years.
Pinault is married to Mexican-American actress Salma Hayek. The couple got married in 2009 in a private ceremony in Venice, Italy. People did report back in 2009 that the couple likely met at a gala at the Palazzo Grassi, a marble palace owned by the François’s family.
Their wedding was the definition of iconic
The marriage of Salmá and Francois was announced in Paris on Valentine’s Day 2009. According to Glamour, she said she did not realize she was marrying her husband until the wedding in February 2023. It’s almost like an intervention I had no idea why they brought me to court. My family, brothers and sisters all fought against me and I had a phobia of marriage.”
They have a daughter together named Valentina Paloma Pinault, who was born in 2007. Pinault also has three other children from previous relationships.
He has a previous marriage with French fashion model Dorothée Lepère from 1996 to 2004. He also had a high-profile relationship with Canadian supermodel Linda Evangelista in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and the two have a son together named Augustin James Evangelista.
Pinault is the son of French billionaire François Pinault, the founder of the Pinault Group (which later became PPR and then Kering), a leading luxury goods holding company. He was born on May 28, 1962, in Rennes, France, and grew up in a wealthy family. Pinault is known for his love of art and is a collector of contemporary art, particularly works by American artists.
In addition to his personal life, François-Henri Pinault is known for his love of sports, particularly soccer. He is a fan of the French soccer team Stade Rennais, which is based in his hometown of Rennes. He is also a member of the board of directors of the French Football Federation.
A graduate of HEC Paris, one of France’s top business schools. He has also served on the board of directors of several companies, including Christie’s auction house, and is a member of the board of directors of the French luxury goods association Comité Colbert.
Pinault is known for his reserved and private personality, and he rarely gives interviews or speaks publicly about his personal life. He is widely respected in the business world for his leadership and his commitment to sustainability and ethical practices in the luxury goods industry.
There have been some controversies surrounding François-Henri Pinault and his business dealings. One of the most notable controversies involved the sale of artworks by the Chapman Brothers on an auction site owned by Pinault’s investment company, Groupe Artémis. The artworks featured child sex mannequins with erect penises, vaginas, and anuses instead of mouths or noses. The sale of these artworks sparked outrage and criticism, with some accusing Pinault of promoting and profiting from the sexualization of children. However, Pinault defended the sales, stating that he believed in the freedom of artistic expression.
Another controversy involving Pinault and his company, Kering, was the use of underage models in fashion shows. In 2017, Kering was fined by French authorities for employing models under the age of 16 in its fashion shows. Pinault apologized for the company’s actions and pledged to work towards greater transparency and accountability in the fashion industry.
Finally, in 2022, Kering-owned fashion brand Balenciaga faced criticism for its controversial ad campaigns featuring child-like models in BDSM-inspired clothing and poses. Pinault, as the CEO and creative director of Kering, faced criticism for the ads, but he and his wife, actress Salma Hayek, remained silent on the issue.
François-Henri Pinault’s public image is that of a successful businessman and leader in the luxury goods industry. He is widely respected for his leadership and his commitment to sustainability and ethical practices. Pinault is known for transforming PPR’s luxury goods division into a global leader in luxury fashion and accessories, and for his philanthropy, particularly his support for causes related to gender equality and violence against women.
However, Pinault’s public image has been somewhat tarnished by controversies surrounding his business dealings, particularly the sale of controversial artworks and the use of underage models in fashion shows. These controversies have led to criticism of Pinault and his company, Kering, with some accusing him of promoting and profiting from controversial and potentially harmful practices. Despite these controversies, Pinault remains a prominent figure in the luxury goods industry, and his leadership of Kering has been widely praised for its focus on sustainability and ethical practices.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Does François Pinault own Gucci?
Pinault serves on the board as an honorary chairman of the luxury firm Kering which owns Saint Laurent, Alexander McQueen and the Gucci group. Pinault founded Kering in 1962 as a timber and building material firm.
What companies does François-Henri Pinault own?
François-Henri Pinault is the CEO and Chairman of Kering, a leading luxury goods holding company that owns several luxury fashion brands, including Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, and Alexander McQueen. Pinault’s holding company, Groupe Artémis, also owns a number of other companies, including Christie’s auction house and the French soccer team Stade Rennais.
How did François-Henri Pinault become so successful?
He became successful through his leadership and business acumen. He took over the luxury goods division of his father’s company, PPR, and transformed it into kering foundation a global leader in luxury fashion and accessories. Under his leadership, Kering has become a leader in sustainability and ethical practices in the luxury goods industry. Pinault is also known for his philanthropy and his commitment to social responsibility.
What is François-Henri Pinault’s net worth?
As of 2023, François-Henri Pinault’s net worth is estimated to be around $44 billion, according to Forbes.
What is the relationship between François-Henri Pinault and Kering?
He is the CEO and Chairman of Kering, a leading luxury goods holding company that owns several luxury fashion brands, including Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, and Alexander McQueen. Pinault has been instrumental in transforming Kering into a leader in sustainability and ethical practices in the luxury goods industry.
Who Is Salma Hayek’s Husband?
Salma Hayek and her fiance French Investor François-Hinton Pinault, were married in 1997. The couple began dating in 2006 with their daughter, Valentina Palomas Pinault. It’s been nine years-long since Pinault surprised the actress with a vow renewal in Bora. After Hayek’s marriage, the actress became Salma Hayakin Pinault. But most of the entertainment industry “refused” adopting her brand.
What is François-Henri Pinault’s role in the fashion industry?
François-Henri Pinault is a prominent figure in the fashion industry as the CEO and Chairman of Kering, a leading luxury goods holding company that owns several luxury fashion brands, including Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, and Alexander McQueen. Pinault has been instrumental in transforming Kering into a leader in sustainability and ethical practices in the luxury goods industry. He has also been involved