Powerful Entrepreneur Johann Rupert Quotes, South Africa’s Richest Man

I’ve compiled some of the most powerful Johann Rupert quotes.

Johann Peter Rupert was born on June 1, 1950. He is the eldest son of business magnate Anton Rupert and a South African entrepreneur. He is the chairman of Richemont, a Swiss luxury goods firm, and Remgro, a South African investment holding company. 

Rupert became CEO of Compagnie Financière Richemont on April 1, 2010. Rupert and his family were placed second-richest in South Africa on the Forbes 2021 list, with a fortune estimated to be US$8.1 billion.

Rupert studied economics and company law at Stellenbosch University. He founded Rand Merchant Bank in 1979 after working for Chase Manhattan Bank and Lazard Freres in New York.

In May 2013, he announced his intention to take a 12-month sabbatical, appointing vice chairman Yves-Andre Istel to take his place. Rupert has received several awards for his entrepreneurial endeavors, including the French Legion d’Honneur in 2009.

14 Johann Rupert Quotes

1. “It is a philosophy that people must understand that you can’t consume now and pay for it tomorrow.”

2. “Rule one in life is to delegate stress.”

3. “The best entrepreneurs that I’ve met in my life all have a touch of paranoia and not a lot of hubris. They always worry that someone is gonna eat their breakfast while they’re sleeping.”

4. “I want to be master of my own time. It is ironic that someone in the watch business should not be in control of his time.”

 5. “Corruption stole from the very poor … I’m not the victim of the thievery and corruption.”

6. “It is not just disposable income but whether people feel good about their immediate future that drives sales. It is this feel-good factor that drives the purchases more and more than mere economic wealth.”

7. “I don’t think we’ll ever have peace unless there is a proper redistribution. I wouldn’t say land; I would say property.”

8. “Governments can’t create jobs. If governments could create jobs, there wouldn’t be unemployment anywhere. It’s small and medium enterprises [that create jobs], but in order to do that we need to cut the red tape.”

 9. “Afrikaners don’t want other Afrikaners to succeed … Do you really think there’s not an enormous amount of jealousy?”

10. “Trends carry on forever, until they stop. I want to be around after things come to a standstill. As a result, I tend to be pretty conservative.”

Johann Rupert quotes

11. “I have a problem that all of our politicians, for the last 10 years, have treated voters like fools. Voters are not fools. Voters are highly intelligent.”

12. “I don’t want to start producing dressing gowns and cuff links with the Purdey name stamped on them. Making Purdey the leading gunmaker is our priority. Once we have succeeded in doing that, then we might look at some accessories, but it is a long haul.”

13. “If everybody had to be as good as Madiba or Mother Theresa, yes, then socialism could’ve worked. But people are not that giving. People are not that nice. People act in their self-interest.”

14. “They [the older generation] didn’t go and buy BMWs and hang around Taboo and The Sands [nightclubs] all the time. I hear this narrative that Madiba was a sell-out. It’s totally disrespectful. I don’t see your age group, call me ou toppie [old man], I don’t see you going to jail for two, nearly three decades. No, you’ll miss The Sands. In a sense, be respectful to your elders. Your generation, I haven’t seen leadership coming out. Remember, I met Steve Biko when he was in his 20s and he wouldn’t have carried on in Taboo.”

My favorite Johann Rupert quotes are, “Rule one in life is to delegate stress.” and “It is a philosophy that people must understand that you can’t consume now and pay for it tomorrow.”

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