France’s next 10 richest drinks barons

17. François Faiveley and family

François Faiveley (right) and his son, Erwan.

Worth: €830m
Challenges 500 position: 98
Company: Wabtec
Sector: Industry/Wine

Wine lovers will of course recognise the Faiveley name as being among Burgundy’s bigger landowners and négoce houses.

It is perhaps less well known that as well as their extensive vineyard holdings in the Côte d’Or, the Faiveley family was also behind a manufacturing business that made doors, brakes, pantographs and other vital rail parts for trains all over the world, including France’s own famous TGV high-speed trains.

Unlike many industrialists who make their fortune and then buy a vineyard, the Faiveleys made their money in wine first and then turned industrialists.

Last year the industrial company was acquired by the American manufacturer Wabtec who took a controlling stake.

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