LVMH becomes Europe’s first $500bn company

LVMH chairman and CEO Bernard Arnault

By Mark McSherry

The stock market value of Paris-based LVMH has reached the $500 billion mark as it becomes the first European company to achieve that milestone.

Shares of LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE rose about 0.3% to €903.70 on Monday morning, valuing the company at €454 billion ($500 billion).

LVMH is the parent company of Louis Vuitton, Moët & Chandon and Hennessy as well as brands including Givenchy, Bulgari and Sephora.

The valuation comes amid strong sales of LVMH’s luxury goods in China and a strengthening euro.

LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault is currently the world’s richest person, according to the Forbes real-time billionaires index.

“Luxury stocks embody what the equity market has best to offer at the moment: exposure to Chinese consumption, which continues to surprise on the rise, and robust margins thanks to their pricing power,” Lilia Peytavin, European portfolio strategist at Goldman Sachs in Paris, told Bloomberg.

“This differentiates Luxury from Tech, whose margins have been contracting for several quarters already.”

Bank of America Corp.’s Ashley Wallace believes LVMH shares can hit €1,000 in the next year.

“LVMH is too cheap given the attractiveness of the luxury goods sector, its strong portfolio of brands and best-in-class execution,” wrote Wallace wrote in a report.