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Societe Generale Private Banking and Forbes Insights analyse the staying power of wealth creation in Europe: family, long-lived & long-term-oriented

Societe Generale Private Banking and Forbes Insights analyse the staying power of wealth creation in Europe: family, long-lived & long-term-oriented

Societe Generale Private Banking and Forbes Insights* have published an exclusive study** on the evolution of wealth creation in Europe and the longevity of European fortunes over the last quartercentury, entitled: "Behind the Staying Power of Wealth Creation in Europe: Family, Long-Lived &Long-Term-Oriented".

Western Europe emerges as a bulwark of stability with regard to its fortunes, having the highest longevity rate in the world. The staying power of European fortunes is based on its tastemaker brands and on keeping businesses private and in the family. Overall, Europe has had a strong pace of growth in wealth creation, aided by the emerging markets of Central and Eastern Europe. However, the momentum may have slowed, which raises the question: can Europe hold on to its share of wealth creation based on its old strengths?

This year's study includes the following key findings:

• Europe has expanded its share of the world's largest fortunes. Over the last 25 years,Europe has increased its share of the number of the world's biggest fortunes. Europe had the second-highest increase in the number of fortunes, after the Americas, and the secondhighest increase in the aggregate growth of fortunes held by the wealthiest individuals.

• Western European fortunes are the longest-lived worldwide. Of the fortunes that havebeen on the Forbes Billionaires lists for at least a quarter of a century, Europe has the highest survival rate, 78%, followed by the United States at 73%. These longest-surviving European fortunes are mostly private (67%) and family-controlled or owned, with the majority (52%) being managed or owned by third and fourth generations.

• Europe owes its pace of growth in fortune creation over the last 15 years to emergingEuropean markets. Emerging Europe accounts for 42% of the number of Europe's largestfortunes, and 39% of wealth held by Europe's richest individuals. Back in 2002, Germany was in second place for most billionaires by country, after the United States. It was overtaken by Russia in 2008. (Russia has since been overtaken by China.)

• Most recently, Europe has been generating new fortunes at a moderate pace. Europehas generated 26% of the world's new fortunes over the last two years, behind the Americas and Asia-Pacific. Within Europe, more of the newest fortunes have been generated in Western Europe than in emerging Europe. Research shows that many Western European fortunes are the result of the second generation reaching billionaire status based on companies started years ago. And in emerging markets, some new fortunes still harken back to the post-communist asset privatizations.

Whether their wealth comes from family or from business, Societe Generale Private Banking accompanies ultra high net worth individuals worldwide through its international network of offices in 14 countries. More widely, Societe Generale group serves wealthy entrepreneurs through Private Investment Banking, a complete and dedicated offering which gives these clients access to all the wealth management and investment banking expertise within the Group, providing solutions both for their private and professional needs.