Even the second richest man in the world has to slump sometimes.
Bernard Arnault, the French CEO of luxury brand LVMH, admitted that he recently sold the company’s private jet and instead hired private airlines to travel.
The reason? Some Twitter accounts have followed his travels, and Arnault didn’t like the lack of privacy.
“With all these stories, the group did indeed have a plane and we sold it,” Arnault said in a podcast interview with Radio Classic. “The result is now that no one can see where I am going because I rent planes when I use private planes.”
Arnault may not be a household name like Elon Musk or Jeff Bezos, but he’s worth it $133 billionaccording to Bloomberg’s Billionaire Index.
Like other big spenders, he has been the target of several Twitter accounts that focus on what they consider to be wasteful air travel.
Now he’s trying to fly under the Twitter radar.
Airlines and Co2 emissions
Climate scientists have said airlines are responsible for 2.4 percent (about 1 billion tons) of annual human-generated Co2 emissions. And a report from Oxfam called Confront carbon inequalityfound that between 1990 and 2015, the richest one percent of people were responsible for 15 percent of emissions — that’s more than double that of the poorest half of humanity (7 percent).
As a result, private jets have become the target of many activists on social media. A Twitter account called Famous jets follows the private air travels of celebrities like Kylie Jenner, Taylor Swift and Drake.
Drake’s jet landed in Toronto, Ontario, CA. pic.twitter.com/xhk3TbgDj2
— CelebJets (@CelebJets) October 17, 2022
Another Twitter account called @laviondebernard (Bernard’s Plane) followed Bernard Arnault’s journey until he sold his plane last September.
It turns out that the travel habits of the rich and famous are a major controversy in France, with the French Minister of Transport even proposing a ban or tax private jets.
Arnault and Kanye West
It is not the first time that Arnault has been in the news this month. The otherwise obscure billionaire, at least to Americans, was thrust into the spotlight when Kanye West accused him of killing his best friend on Instagram. The accusation referred to the death of Off-White founder Virgil Abloh, who died last year of cancer.