France may not be a big fan of Bernard Arnault, but the UK certainly loves him.
According to WWD, the chairman and chief executive officer of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton has been approved by the Queen to receive an Order of the British Empire, which will give Arnault the honorary title of a Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office told the trade that Arnault was receiving the award for “services to business and the wider community in the U.K.”
Back in his homeland, however, things aren’t so rosy. After it was revealed that Arnault had applied for Belgian citizenship on the heels of France’s new Socialist government promise to impose a 75 percent tax rate on incomes of more than one million euros, Libération, a left-leaning newspaper, published a photo of the businessman with the headline: “Casse-toi riche con!”–which translates, essentially to, “Get Lost Rich Idiot!”
Arnault then turned around and filed suit against the paper for ‘public insult’–which isn’t too surprising considering he is CEO of the legendarily litigious LVMH group. According to WWD, a court date has been set for next year, and Arnault is seeking damages and interest between 15,000 euros and 20,000 euros as well as the publication of the justice’s decision on the front page of Libération.
Who knows, maybe being a knight will help Arnault be brave in this upcoming court battle…