Dietrich Mateschitz, co-founder of the Pink Bull vitality drink firm and proprietor of the model’s Method One racing staff, has died on the age of 78.
The Austrian entrepreneur turned the caffeinated canned drink into one of many world’s best-known manufacturers, with its “Pink Bull offers you wings” slogan and advertising campaigns that revolved round excessive sports activities.
Mateschitz had a internet value of roughly $20bn, in accordance with Forbes. He and Thai businessman Chaleo Yoovidhya based Pink Bull in 1984, offered their first vitality drinks in Austria three years later, and expanded into the US in 1997. Yoovidhya died in 2012.
Greater than 9.8bn cans of Pink Bull have been offered globally final yr, up by round 24 per cent on the prior yr, in accordance with the corporate’s web site. Group revenues elevated by an identical proportion to €7.8bn. It employed over 13,600 individuals on the finish of final yr.
The inspiration for the vitality drink got here to Mateschitz throughout his travels in Thailand as a advertising director for a toothpaste maker now owned by Procter & Gamble.
The Pink Bull billionaire additionally constructed up an enormous sports activities empire that ranged from Method 1 racing groups to soccer golf equipment. The Pink Bull community of soccer golf equipment contains Austria-based Pink Bull Salzburg, Germany-based RB Leipzig, and the New York Pink Bulls.
Mateschitz acquired into the Method 1 automobile racing sequence within the Nineteen Nineties, purchased the Jaguar racing staff in 2004 and entered the next season below the Pink Bull title. With Sebastian Vettel on the wheel, Pink Bull Racing received each F1 championships — for drivers and constructors — 4 years working from 2010-13.
Nonetheless, Pink Bull Racing struggled to match Mercedes and British racing driver Lewis Hamilton, a mix that dominated the championships from 2014.
Final yr, Pink Bull driver Max Verstappen claimed the driving force’s title from Hamilton in controversial circumstances on the season finale in Abu Dhabi. The Dutchman has already defended that title and Pink Bull is about to grab the constructor’s championship from Mercedes as quickly as Sunday’s US Grand Prix in Austin.
Mateschitz’s demise emerged on Saturday in the course of the F1 race weekend.
“It’s very, very unhappy. What an important man,” stated Pink Bull staff principal Christian Horner on Sky Sports activities. “What he achieved and what he’s carried out for therefore many individuals world wide throughout completely different sports activities is second to none.”
Fellow Austrian Toto Wolff, the staff principal at Mercedes, described Mateschitz as one of many world’s biggest entrepreneurs.
“He created a market that didn’t exist with vitality drinks out of Salzburg and made among the best manufacturers on this planet. There’s nobody like him.”