After a long battle with cancer, Dietrich Mateschitz (the Austrian billionaire founder of Red Bull) has passed away at 78.
The entrepreneur is considered to be the richest man in Austria. He built a global empire around his energy drink.
His fortune is valued at EUR25bn (PS21.8bn), making him 51st in Forbes’ list.
Formula 1 spoke highly of his “unforgettable contributions” to the sport, and stated that he has left behind a “lasting legacy”.
We know very little about the private life of Mr Mateschitz. He was shy around media and seldom spoke publicly.
He was a long-term partner in Salzburg and used to drink 10-12 cans of Red Bull per day.
He graduated from the University of World Trade, Vienna. In the 1970s, he was a marketing specialist in various companies.
He was able to learn about the Asian market for stimulant and energy drinks through his business trips.
He founded Red Bull GmbH in 1984 with two Thai entrepreneurs. He held a 49% share.
Red Bull was launched in 1987 after modifying the Thai energy drink’s recipe and creating a marketing strategy.
After a tough market entry, the bubbly, carbonated, sweet beverage rose to be the global market leader.
In 2021, the group had a turnover of EUR7.8bn. (PS6.8bn). The group also sold 9.8 million Red Bull cans around the world.
Mateschitz was the founder of Red Bull Racing, an F1 racing team based out of Milton Keynes.
Just before qualifying at the United States Grand Prix in New York, news of his death was reported by Red Bull’s principal Christian Horner. He stated that they would do their best to help him during the weekend’s races.
He said, “It’s very, very sad. He was a true gentleman. We are so grateful to him for everything he did, all he supported us with over the years, and so many drivers, team members, and pitlane personnel owe him so much.
It is important to recognize and celebrate the contributions he made. He was a remarkable man and an inspiration to which we owe so much.