Giorgio Armani, who just bought a $17.5 million penthouse, doesn't believe he's the third-richest person in Italy: 'There are some people who are hiding'

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Giorgio Armani, who just bought a $17.5 million penthouse, doesn't believe he's the third-richest person in Italy: 'There are some people who are hiding'

Giorgio Armani

Photo by Lia Toby/BFC/Getty Images

Fashion designer Giorgio Armani has a net worth of about $11 billion, according to Forbes.

On December 4, The Guardian published fashion editor Hannah Marriott's interview with billionaire fashion designer Giorgio Armani, shortly after after he was honored with the "Outstanding Achievement" award at this year's British Fashion Awards.

Less than a week later, Katherine Clarke of The Wall Street Journal reported that Armani had purchased the New York City penthouse belonging to his neighbor, departing T-Mobile CEO John Legere, for "roughly $17.5 million."

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Armani is best known for his namesake luxury brand, which made roughly $2.3 billion in revenue last year. He serves as the creative director of the Emporio and Giorgio Armani labels and is the chairman and CEO of the Armani Group.

Armani doubts the accuracy of Forbes' ranking of his wealth

The designer told Marriott to take his Forbes-reported $11 billion net worth and Forbes' wealth rankings with a "pinch of salt." In particular, Armani cited Forbes listing him as the third-richest person in Italy (where he currently still ranks, per the latest available data from Forbes' Real-Time Billionaires List) - something which the designer refuses to believe.

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"There are some people who are hiding," he said.

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(Bloomberg's estimate of Armani's net worth is significantly lower, at $6.63 billion, though that figure still ranks him No. 5 among Italy's richest people on the Billionaires Index.)

Still, Armani agreed that being known for an extravagant lifestyle has been beneficial, in a sense. "Being known for what I earn has helped the brand and made it the pinnacle of luxury," he said.

The designer isn't a fan of "billionaire bashing"

Marriott also asked Armani about the "billionaire bashing" that has been observed in both the US and the UK elections. When Marriott questioned whether the esteemed designer felt personally targeted by this "billionaire bashing," Armani said he didn't "like it."

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In the United States, 2020 Democratic presidential nominee frontrunners like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, have been calling for the redistribution of wealth in the country. "I don't think that billionaires should exist," Sanders said, per The New York Times, also noting the "immoral level of income and wealth inequality" in the country.

In 2017, The Washington Post reported that the top 20% of households hold 90% of the wealth in the US, while the top 1% own 40% of the nation's wealth.

Meanwhile, in the UK, The Independent reported on Wednesday that the six richest people in the UK hold more money than the bottom 13.2 million in the nation combined.

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A representative for Armani didn't immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider.

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