Czech billionaire, who had major business presence in Russia, killed in helicopter crash

One of world's wealthiest men killed in helicopter crash

Czech multi-billionaire Petr Kellner, the owner of PPF international financial and investment group, was killed in the crash of the Eurocopter AS50 helicopter near Butte, Alaska, USA, on Saturday, March 27. PPF secretary Jitka Tkadletsova confirmed the death of the wealthiest citizen of the Czech Republic.

"Mr. Kellner was killed in a helicopter crash in Alaska. The funeral will be held in a narrow family circle," she said.

The reasons for the crash have not yet been established. The US National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the accident.

On Sunday, March 28, it was reported that at least five people were killed in the crash of the Eurocopter AS50 helicopter. The accident occurred in the area of ​​the Knick Glacier in Alaska. According to the website of the local rescue service, another Czech citizen, Benjamin Laroche, is also listed among the victims. Other victims of the crash were identified as US citizens:

  • guides Gregory Harms, Sean McMannani
  • pilot Zach Russell.

One passenger survived, his name has not been announced yet. The survivor has been hospitalized in critical condition in Anchorage. It is assumed that the passengers of the helicopters were going for an excursion.

Petr Kellner owned 98.93 percent of PPF since 2019. According to Forbes magazine, his fortune was estimated at $15.5 billion. Forbes put Peter Kellner on the list of world's wealthiest people during the past 15 years.

The portfolio of PPF Group assets includes companies that provide banking and financial services, operate in the field of telecommunications, mechanical engineering, biotechnology, real estate, as well as insurance and agriculture.

It is worthy of note that the Czech PPF Group includes PPF Real Estate Russia, a developer, investor and consultant that manages real estate. The group's portfolio in Russia includes commercial real estate, for example, the Comcity office park; the company manages Metropolis business center, the Nevsky Center shopping mall, the Yarmarka shopping and entertainment center, the Yuzhnye Vrata and Tomilino industrial parks.

  • In 2008, PPF Group entered the capital of Russia's largest silver producer and one of the leading gold miners Polymetal - PPF Group purchased Cyprus company Pearlmoon Ltd., which owned 24.9% of Polymetal.
  • PPF Group N. V. is the majority shareholder with a 91.12 percent shareholding at Home Credit Group, which provides consumer finance services, including in Russia.

Kellner also owned a stake at one of Russia's major insurance companies Ingosstrakh, was one of the "kings of Russian real estate business" and wanted to buy Chelsea football club from Roman Abramovich, RBC reports.

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