Salma Hayek’s Husband Francois-Henri Pinault Pledges £86m Towards Notre Dame
French billionaire Francois-Henri Pinault, the husband of Salma Hayek and the CEO of luxury group Kering, has pledged €100m (£86m) to help restore the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris after yesterday's devastating fire.
In a statement, the billionaire said he would contribute the huge figure towards "the effort necessary to completely rebuild Notre Dame".
Kering owns fashion houses including Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent, and Pinault said the money would be paid by the family's investment firm, Artemis.
Another French billionaire, Bernard Arnault, the CEO of luxury brand LVMH, also pledged €200m (£172) to the reconstruction efforts, saying in a statement: "The Arnault family and LVMH, in solidarity after this national tragedy, will participate in the reconstruction of this extraordinary cathedral, a symbol of France, its heritage and its unity."
« La famille Arnault et le groupe LVMH, solidaires de cette tragédie nationale, se mobilisent pour #NotreDame.
Ils feront un don d'une somme globale de 200 millions d'euros au fond dédié à la reconstruction de cette œuvre architecturale, qui fait partie de l'Histoire de France. » pic.twitter.com/KdOTpNokIi
- LVMH (@LVMH) April 16, 2019
The shocking blaze took place in the 850-year-old landmark yesterday, destroying the roof of one of the world's most famous religious monuments.
French President Emmanuel Macron promised to rebuild the cathedral in an emotional statement during which he was visibly upset.
"We were able to build this cathedral more than 800 years ago and over the centuries to enlarge it and improve it, and I tell you very solemnly this evening, this cathedral, we will rebuild it, all together," he said yesterday.
Notre-Dame is aflame. Great emotion for the whole nation. Our thoughts go out to all Catholics and to the French people. Like all of my fellow citizens, I am sad to see this part of us burn tonight. https://t.co/27CrJgJkJb
- Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) April 15, 2019
"Notre Dame de Paris is our history, our literature, the life of our imagination, the place where we have lived all our great moments, our epidemics, our wars, our liberations, it's the epicentre of our life.
"It's a cathedral of all the French even when they have never been to it. This history is ours, and it is burning."
The President said that an international campaign would be launched to raise money for the rebuilding of the cathedral.
Police are considering the fire to be an "involuntary" accident and have ruled out foul play.
Featured Image Credit: Javier Rojas/Zuma Press/PA Images