Crisis? What crisis?
Hungary’s top 100 richest people have assets of more than HUF 2,000 billion – enough to build five projects with a cost tag similar to Metro 4. Although the ranking shows several changes from last year, being rich seems pretty much crisis-proof: the aggregated assets of the country’s most wealthy individuals are up 6% on a year-on-year basis.
Food industry magnate Sándor Csányi, who is also head of Hungary’s largest commercial bank OTP, once again tops Napi Gazdaság’s 2013 list of the richest Hungarians. His estimated assets were unchanged from last year at HUF 135 billion. An interesting fact: Csányi had estimated assets of HUF 15 bln in 2002, when the first such list was first published (by Magyar Hírlap back then), which was enough for him to make it to ninth place. The majority of his assets come from his stake in OTP – he has a 1% direct share with a current value of HUF 12 bln. He also has a significant investment portfolio in agriculture: his Bonafarm group is present in every segment from arable farming to the food industry.
Lászó Bige, who has an estimated fortune of HUF 130 bln, closely follows Csányi at the top. Bige made HUF 20 bln more last year than the year previously, which ensured him second place, up from the third in 2012. Bige owns chemical companies and fertilizer producers. Bige Holding, according to the Top 100 Richest Hungarians publication, is one of the few large companies in Hungary that was able to finance its developments, to the tune of several billions of forints, from its own resources. The group’s profit was HUF 25 bln in 2012 – more than three times more than in 2010 (HUF 7 bln).
Ranked third, György Gattyán also increased his assets by some HUF 20 bln, to HUF 118 bln. Gattyán is the owner of Docler, a company group that supplies adult content to websites, and was first included in the top 100 in 2011 with HUF 33 bln (which made him 15th).
Gábor Várszegi, who is now based in Luxemburg and whose flagship company Fotex is listed on the Luxemburg stock exchange, moved back two places – to fourth from last year’s second. His assets shrank by HUF 15 bln compared to last year.
Construction industry magnate Sándor Demján has been towards the top of the list since it was first published, and took first place from 2007 until 2010. Since then, though, he has gradually fallen back (to second place in 2011, fourth in 2012 and fifth this year). According to Napi Gazdaság’s calculations, he’s worth HUF 15 bln less in 2013 than a year ago.
There are nine newcomers on this year’s list. One of them, Tamás Rákosi, made it straight into the top ten with assets of HUF 75 bln. He is mainly active in the media business: he sold his share in commercial TV channel RTL Klub. He still owns IKO Production Kft, and has shares (direct and indirect) in RAKO Kft, Dentalcoop-DC Kft, Zugligeti Klinika Kft and Videovox Kft.
Another newcomer to the list is Róbert Szűcs, whose wealth of HUF 9.2 bln drove him to 65th place. Szűcs has been in the wine business since 2000, but started out in trading medical equipment. His firm, Novomed Kft, had HUF 1.5 bln in turnover in 2012, and his two wine cellars produce about one million bottles of wine a year.
Right in his wake is a family with estimated assets of HUF 9 bln. The Németh family owns CHS Hungary-Kventa, a company group active in the IT sector. The group was founded by the late Imre Németh, and since his death in 2009, his wife and two sons have carried on the business, which had a turnover of HUF 34 bln in 2011.
The list includes 11 family businesses, among them the Zwack family (ranked 74th), and the Barabás family (producer of the Hell energy drink, ranked 86th).
After the owners of brokerage company’s Brokernet parted ways last year, one of them, Erika Kósa founded Consequit. As a result of the split, she now takes 50th place on the list, falling back from 15th last year (with assets of HUF 12.2 bln and HUF 34 bln, respectively). She is, by the way, the only woman among Hungary’s wealthiest individuals.
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