Dealing with inherited wealth is not easy, especially when the wealth is of great value. The wealth needs to be maintained to avoid the collapse of its source, and one way is to ensure you work both smart and hard. Inherited wealth is also prone to jealousy from people who wish they were the ones enjoying the wealth; some have even killed for a few thousand dollars since they are named as next of kin. Stefan Quandt is one who has been fortunate enough to inherit lots of wealth and has worked hard to maintain it. The German billionaire was born in Bad Homburg to Johanna Quandt and Herbert Quandt. He was part of the family members that inherited his late father's wealth, most notably BMW. Get to know more about Stefan by checking on these facts about him.
1. He is the largest shareholder of BMW
Stefan is the major shareholder of BMW, which is a prominent automobile in the luxury market. According to Forbes, Stefan owns 23.7% of the automaker with Susanne Klatten, and his sister owns 19.2%, making her the richest woman in Germany. The ownership of BMW was once held by their parents. Johanna, their mother, who was the third wife to their father, promoted the brand of vehicle and later gave shares to the children. At some point, the company was at the risk of total collapse, but Stefan's father came to its rescue.
2. He serves at BMW supervisory board as the deputy chairperson
Being the largest shareholders of BMW, the siblings of Herbert Quandt help in a supervisory capacity. Stefan is the deputy chairperson in the board, and many of the decisions of the company get implemented only after consulting him. He has been the deputy chairperson in the supervisory board since 1999 after joining the board earlier in 1997, and his appointment goes until 2024.
3. He is a graduate in economics and engineering
Stefan is a graduate from the Technical University of Karlsruhe where he pursued degrees in economics and engineering before starting his business journey. Stefan was interested in science from a younger age; hence, the billionaire studied the courses from 1987 to 1993. Upon graduating, he ventured into business which is in line with his area of study to put his theoretical knowledge into practice.
4. His life is harder than you think
Stefan being a billionaire might make us believe that he is enjoying life. Despite the luxury that is associated with the wealth that he has, several things make his life hard. First of all, it was a great challenge to inherit a considerable fortune from his father. Chances were high that the company could collapse under his management, and this sent him thinking of how to maintain it. Stefan says that inheriting the wealth made many people jealous and he has to deal with the jealousy daily, which makes things hard for him. At some point, cases were filed against the company, and he had to defend the company against all accusations made.
5. His motivation is success, not cash
Whenever we are starting a business, what we mainly think about is the projected profits. Stefan is different in this regard; it is not the money that drives him but instead gets motivation from positive results in the company. When he was given a seat on the board at 30, Stefan experienced intense pressure as he had to show everybody how things will work out with him at the helm. He currently looks at creating jobs for people in Germany instead of making a lot of money as a measure of his success.
6. His father died in 1982
His father, Herbert Quandt, passed away in 1982. He was in three different marriages that were preceded by divorce in the first two. Herbert was a prominent businessman, and he is the reason why Stefan is swimming in enormous wealth. He made BMW the big brand that it is today through his tireless efforts. However, there is a time when this immense wealth would have been taken away from the family when the board of BMW wanted to sell the company to another businessman. Herbert could not allow it and defended it, by all means, ensuring that he left his children and grandchildren a fortune. He also saved the company from bankruptcy by diverting funds that he had from other companies to BMW. Since Herbert was shred businessman, he ensured that the shares of BMW were spread equally among his children to avoid family disputes over the allocation. Upon his death, his children inherited all the businesses that Herbert ran.
7. He is the 66th wealthiest person in the world
Stefan rose to fame mainly through the wealth that he has which places him in the list of the world's wealthiest persons. He is ranked 66 by Forbes, although the entire family of the late Herbert Quandt is wealthy.
8. He has a net worth of $15.5 billion
When mentioning billionaires in Germany, Stefan Quandt is a name that you must come across. Being a shareholder in many businesses contributes to his net worth of $15.5 billion. His primary source of wealth is BMW, where he owns the most significant shares of the company. Other sources of income are the companies in which he has shares. The wealth that he has amassed assists him to have a lavish lifestyle as we can see from the type of house he lives in and the cars he drives.
9. He is the youngest son of Herbert Quandt
Stefan is the youngest son of the late Herbert Quandt. He has five other siblings, but not all are from one mother. The ex-wives of their late father, Lieselotte Blobelt and Ursel Mustermann also had kids with him before he married Johanna Bruhn. The children of the late businessman form a more significant part of the management in the companies that their late father owned. Stefan and Susanne who are children of the current wife, are the major shareholders in the wealth left behind by Herbert.
10. He is married
According to Wikipedia, Stefan is married to Katharina Quandt, who is a software engineer. They got married in 2005 and were blessed with a daughter that same year. They currently have two children together, and his supportive wife ensures that Stefan gives back to the community through various philanthropic activities.
11. He loves watching football
Stefan keeps most of his life private, and we cannot know of his hobbies. He, however, loves watching football. He has been seen at various restaurants enjoying football matches. We are not sure of the football team that he supports, but there must be one that keeps making him enjoy the game.
12. He has shares in other companies apart from BMW
Besides BMW, Stefan also has shares in other companies. He takes after the spirit of investing that his father had. Stefan is willing to risk and venture into any business that looks profitable. Some of the firms in which he has invested in include Logwin AG, Heel GmbH, and CEAG. Due to the commitments that he has with BMW, he has his own company that assists him in monitoring the progress of these companies. His firm, Delton AG, keeps him posted on the development of the stock in the other companies.
13. He is known for donating in charity events
Stefan is known for his charity work. He is willing to support the community by making donations to facilitate projects. Despite doing the excellent work of helping other people, he still faced criticism. Stefan's $310,000 donation to one group sparked criticism. Stefan made the contribution alongside with his sister for Christian democrats, but people later said that the money donated to the group was political. They claimed that the two wanted to influence the elections, but then the allegations were deemed false. BMW Company also offers sponsorship to some students, and he is part of the committee that decides on the scholarships. Stefan has been involved in many other charitable activities, turning a deaf ear to the critics who see nothing good in what he does.
14. His work history
Besides being in the board members of BMW, Stefan has held other jobs. Being a graduate in economics, he worked in Boston Consulting Group that is in Munich from 1993 to 1994. Stefan later moved to Minneapolis in 1994 to work in Datacard Group as a marketing manager until 1996. A more significant part of his career has been in employment, and that is where he got the experience to maintain the great BMW Company.
15. He has invested in renewable energies
Stefan has made a step to assist people in utilizing renewable energy. He has a company that managed the investments which are mainly of solar energy. His company, Aqton SE, is responsible for the management of the firms dealing in these solar energies. The renewable energy companies include Heliatek, Kiwigrid, and Solarwatt. Heliatek deals in the manufacture and distribution of organic solar panels while Kiwigrid offers a solution for renewable energy for utilities. Solarwatt, on the other hand, deals in the production of solar batteries, PV panels, and the management of energy solutions.
16. Rumors predict that he will be the head of BMW supervisory board
Rumors predict that Stefan will be the head of BMW supervisory board. With his current position as a deputy chairperson until 2024, he is predicted to rise in ranks. Many people believe that the company is a family thing and Stefan having more shares than anyone is the perfect fit for a managerial position in the supervisory board. Whether the rumors are true or not, one sure thing is that Stefan is equal to the task because of his experience in managing several companies.
17. He has a foundation to promote leadership
Stefan does not fix his time only to run his businesses. He has a foundation with the website that supports a responsible administration. He believes that leaders are the main drivers of the economy, and with good leadership, economic stability is achievable. The organization inspires leaders from all over the world to ensure peace in their areas of jurisdiction. Its main aim is to provide a sustainable future under good leadership, and it, therefore, partners with other like-minded organizations and individuals.
18. He has been in court over the origin of his wealth
Stefan and his family have been in court over the source of their wealth. Some claims were that their late father acquired wealth through the exploitation of slaves when Hitler was in power. Many companies that were found guilty of the similar case were subjected to hefty fines. Stefan and his sister denied the claims and paid a historian to research on how their father got the wealth. The court later concluded that the wealth came from their father's hard work since they lacked evidence. The process of the case has been filmed and is available to interested viewers.
19. He wished he had studied architecture
Despite occupying the envied position in BMW, Stefan wished that he could have studied architecture or worked some few years in a simple job of a product manager. He finds it hard dealing with the big company, and Stefan wanted to start from there before getting to the point of showing everyone what the position demands. Stefan doubted himself for the prominent place that he now occupies. Working with small companies first could make him know what and how he was to do things in the more famous company.
20. His quote on business
Stefan experience in industry presents him as one who can advise on issues about business. We can see this from one of his quotes. One of Stefan's favorite quote is about making way for the future by setting the best standards. He is happy about the impact that his father had on the business and wishes that the same spirit remains in the company. He wishes that future management in the company will deliver their best to keep the company at the top forever.
Written by Liz Flynn
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