Matt Atlas

Petr Kellner Tops Forbes List Of Richest Czechs

According to Forbes’s annual ranking of the richest people, Petr Kellner, the majority shareholder of PPF Group, is the wealthiest Czech with 293 billion crowns. However, he was the only one in the top ten to see his fortune shrink since last year, after shedding 57 billion crowns as Home Credit struggled in the first half of the year.

Real estate mogul Radovan Vítek defended second place, Daniel Křetínský, the owner of Energetický a průmyslový holding (EPH) Daniel Křetínský came in third, and Prime Minister Andrej Babis held onto fourth place. According to Forbes ranking of the richest Czechs.

The richest Czechs’ total assets increased slightly year-on-year to 1.3 trillion crowns, which is almost as much as the revenues of the state budget of the Czech Republic for this year.

Kellner’s Home Credit, which provides consumer loans worldwide, reported a loss of EUR 619 million in the first half of the year, which arose from creating provisions to cover the risks associated with the coronavirus pandemic. A year ago, Home Credit had a profit of EUR 250 million in the first half of the year.

PPF recently completed the acquisition of Central European Media Enterprises (CME) which controls the Nova television group. Forbes pointed out that the crisis is also affecting Kellner’s telecommunications division, specifically Czech O2, Cetina, and Telenor in the Balkans.

Vítek has improved by 11 billion to 86 billion crowns since last year, although its crisis has also affected, because, for example, hotel occupancy is weak. Křetínský, who, in addition to EPH, also owns Sparta Prague, improved by CZK 12 billion to CZK 78 billion jumping from fifth-place last year into the top three. He has invested in Macy’s and Foot Locker, Sainsbury’s, and Royal Mail. Last year, EPH, which includes more than 70 companies, increased its operating EBITDA by ten percent to 56 billion crowns.

Forbes estimates Babis’ assets at 74 billion crowns, an increase of four billion year-on-year. Forbes declared the prime minister one of the coronavirus crisis winners because agriculture, food, and fertilizers are among the least affected sectors. In 2017, Babiš invested the Agrofert holding in trust funds.

Fifth place belongs to the owner of KKCG, Karel Komárek, who, among other things, controls Sazka. His assets are 71 billion crowns, the same as last year when it was enough to take third place.

The co-founder of the antivirus company Avast, Pavel Baudiš, is the sixth with estimated assets of 51 billion crowns.

Baudis’s colleague Eduard Kučera finished in eighth place with 29 billion. Among them, with 32 billion, the group owner is the Sev.en Energy group Pavel Tykač.

The co-owner of the Penta Investments Group, Marek Dospiva, is ninth with CZK 25.3 billion.

The top ten is rounded out by Central Group owner, Dušan Kunovský, with an estimated CZK 20.7 billion in assets.

According to Forbes, the richest woman in the Czech Republic is Jitka Cechlová Komárková, who took 45th place with assets worth 5.8 billion crowns. She acquired most of her wealth during the division of the KKCG holding of the Komárek family.

The ranking of the wealthiest Czechs and Slovaks was also published last week by the daily E15. According to them, Kellner with assets of 233 billion crowns tops the list, Babiš is second with CZK 101.5 billion, and Křetínský third with CZK 86.4 billion.