The richest Czech, Petr Kellner, died on Saturday in a helicopter accident in Alaska. Four other people died in the accident, the American media reported, referring to the operator of the ski hut to which the group was heading. The death of the majority owner of the PPF group was subsequently confirmed by the local police and the PPF group itself.
The Alaska Army National Guard and volunteers from the Alaska Mountain Rescue Group have recovered the deceased from the helicopter crash site near Knik Glacier. Next of kin for the deceased have been notified, and they are identified as:
- 52-year-old Colorado resident Gregory Harms
- 56-year-old Czech Republic resident Petr Kellner
- 50-year-old Czech Republic resident Benjamin Larochaix
- 38-year-old Girdwood, Alaska resident Sean McManamy
- 33-year-old Anchorage, Alaska resident Zachary Russell (pilot)
The injured passenger remains in serious but stable condition and is receiving medical care at an Anchorage area hospital. The helicopter was an Airbus AS350B3 owned by Soloy Helicopters of Wasilla, Alaska
“While his working life was fully marked by incredible diligence and creativity, his private life belonged to his family and children. The funeral will therefore take place in a close family circle. We ask everyone, especially the media, to respect the privacy of Petr Kellner’s family at this difficult time, “said PPF spokeswoman Jitka Tkadlecová.
Kellner was the majority owner of the PPF Group, an investment group that invests in a number of industries and operates on three continents. According to the company’s annual report for 2019, Kellner controls 98.93 percent of PPF. His assets, the daily E15, estimate 233 billion crowns.
In 2018, Petr Kellner ranked #88 on the Forbes World’s Billionaires list, with wealth listed at US$15.5 billion.[