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South African Business Tycoon Anton Rupert Dies at 89

South Africa's billionaire business tycoon, Anton Rupert, who founded Swiss-based luxury goods group Richemont, has died at the age of 89.

Rupert's family said he died Wednesday night at his home near Cape Town. The cause of death was not released, but a family spokesman noted that Rupert had been ill since his wife passed away last year.

Rupert has been listed regularly on Forbes magazine's list of the 500 richest people in the world, with assets worth around $1.7 billion.

From his humble beginnings selling cigarettes from his garage in the 1940's, Rupert became the driving force behind the creation of Richemont. The company owns several luxury goods labels, including Cartier, Montblanc and Dunhill.

Rupert was also a conservationist and was a co-founder of the World Wildlife Fund.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.