Otto Happel, the German entrepreneur, is the 29th richest man in Germany with an estimated net worth of $3 billion. Born in Bochum, he is the son of Otto Happel Sr who founded GEA Happel. After his father died, he was instrumental in turning his father’s dust removal business into a thermal engineering firm. Initially his mother, Elizabeth, took over the company but in 1975 the management was given to Happel.
Mr Otto Happel was very successful in leading the company when he took over. In 1989 it was converted into a public limited company. Ten years later he sold the company to Metallgesellschaft for a reported sum of $1 billion but he kept a 21% interest in the combined group. In 2005 the company was renamed as GEA Group and in 2006 he sold his remaining stake for an estimated $630 million.
Happel is known as a passionate sailor and he owns a yacht by the name of Hetairos. He also owns a luxury resort in Seychelles and has established a Foundation in his name that supports developmental projects in the developing world. He lives in Luzerne, Switzerland with his wife and 6 children.
Read also : The Billionaires of Germany
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