Two French billionaires offer to help rebuild Notre Dame cathedral
An inferno tore through the cathedral on Monday evening
Two billionaire French businessmen have offered their support to help repair Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral after a fire partially destroyed the iconic building.
Buzzfeed report that businessman François-Henri Pinault has dedicated €100 million to the cause.
In a statement, he said: "My father [François Pinault] and I have decided to release as of now from the funds of Artemis a sum of 100 million euros to participate in the effort that will be necessary for the complete reconstruction of Notre Dame."
Pinault is the chairman and CEO of luxury group Kering - Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen and Ligue 1 side Stade Rennais F.C. all fall under his control.
Not to be outdone, Bernard Arnault of rival luxury goods group LVMH has also pledged €200 million to go towards the repairs. LVMH'a brands include Moët & Chandon, Luis Vuitton and Hennessy.
Bernard Arnault's family and his luxury goods group LVMH say they will donate €200m (£172.7m) to help repair Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral according to a statement issued on behalf of the billionaire businessman
— Sky News Breaking (@SkyNewsBreak) April 16, 2019
The blaze consumed the 12th century building on Monday evening, eviscerating the medieval wooden roof and spire. Officials have speculated the cause may be the €6 million renovation works, after the Catholic Church launched an urgent appeal.
Local media report no one was injured by the fire and police are treating it as an accident.
French president Emmanuel Macron said he was "so sad tonight to see this part of all of us burn." He was scheduled to make a speech this evening following gilet jaunes protests but delayed arrangements in order to witness the scene.
Notre Dame is one of the most-visited buildings in the world and annually 12 million people visit it.