millionaire heir is looking for strangers: An Austrian millionaire has been considering how to distribute the €25m (£21.5m) inheritance of his grandmother Traudl Engelhorn-Vechiatto, and he has come up with a unique solution.
Marlene Engelhorn, 31, from Vienna, is a descendant of Friedrich Engelhorn, who founded the German chemical and pharmaceutical company BASF.
When his grandmother died in September 2022, Engelhorn inherited a large sum of money. The heir has decided to redistribute his wealth by asking Austrian citizens to participate in his initiative called the Good Council for Redistribution.
“I have inherited wealth, and therefore power, without having done anything for it,” he said. And the government doesn’t even want to tax it.”
Earlier this week, 10,000 people were randomly selected to apply, and 50 of them were chosen to join and share their thoughts on how to use Inheritance.
Winners will receive €1,200 for each weekend they participate. Child care and interpreters are also provided to those who need them.
Engelhorn believes that these talks will be “a service to democracy”.
He said: I don’t have any veto rights, I put my assets at the disposal of these 50 people and I trust them.
If 50 people can’t come up with a “broadly supported” decision on what to do with the money, they’ll send it back to Engelhorn.
“If the politicians don’t do their job and redistribute, then I have to redistribute my wealth myself,” he explained in his statement.
“Many people struggle to make ends meet with full-time jobs and pay taxes for every euro they earn from work. I see this as a failure of politics, and if politics fails, citizens have to deal with it themselves. ”