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Saturday, August 13, 2022

The newest member of Luxury’s First Family has risen to prominence

Frédéric Arnault, the 26-year-old chief executive officer of TAG Heuer, may be the world’s youngest chief executive officer of a premium watch business. Perhaps the fourth child of Bernard Arnault, the world’s third wealthiest man and chairman of LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, the world’s biggest luxury corporation, he is the heir apparent to his father, Bernard Arnault (owner of TAG Heuer as well as Dior, Givenchy, Bulgari and more than 70 other brands).

He might possibly be the fourth member of his family to work in the family firm. He may have unrealistic expectations for how successful his specific watch brand will become. And when it comes to the organisation he has developed, his father, 72, who is well-known for his aggressive acquisition strategies, may have dynastic plans that are well-known.

As Frédéric Arnault enters the public eye as a result of a highly publicised partnership with actor Ryan Gosling, which was announced earlier this month at a celebrity-packed party in Beverly Hills — Mr. Arnault’s first major in-person event since taking over as CEO of TAG Heuer last year — the family wishes to make it absolutely clear that this is not the storey of Kendall Roy, Roman Roy, or anyone else even remotely similar to the Roy family.

No way in hell. Uh-uh. No matter how much the rest of the world wants that to be the case, it is not. As a result, the newest member of the first family of luxury has decided to officially come out of the closet.

Mr. Arnault is dressed in a navy suit and a white shirt the with collar managed to leave unbuttoned, and also a redesigned TAG Heuer Aquaracer Night Diver enjoy, to his thick brown hair standing more or less on end.

As fluently as he speaks English, Italian, and German, he can rattle off statistics and models with equal ease. He can wax lyrical about the TAG Heuer watch factory in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, and the 150 steps it takes to build one dial; argue about the merits of mechanical versus connected (smart) watches; and exult over the 500,000 members of the TAG Heuer golf app, which is linked to the company’s golf smartwatch

In fact, he is considerably more comfortable talking about his company than he is about himself or his family. Despite the fact that the two are inextricably linked.

From the beginning, Frédéric was being groomed to take over as the CEO of TAG Heuer. Stéphane Bianchi, who was hired as TAG Heuer’s chief executive and head of the watch company not long after, said his father “asked that you report back when you think he’s ready.” Bianchi was recruited in part to prepare his father’s successor. In the event you believe he will never be ready, please come back to me as well.” Mr. Bianchi recognised that it had not been the most straightforward transfer.

Frédéric Arnault, like the majority of the Arnault children and their father, is an avid tennis player. Golf, jogging, and kitesurfing are some of his other favourite activities. He and one of his brothers often compete in doubles matches against their father and a professional. Despite the fact that Mr. Arnault Sr. used to be victorious, his son claims that the situation has shifted. Mr. Bianchi, on the other hand, prefers squash, so the two played a match.

Jonathan James
I serve as a Senior Executive Journalist of The National Era
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