Czech sphinx Daniel Kretinsky pockets £220m dividend amid energy boom
Czech Sphinx: Daniel Kretinsky
A Czech tycoon with large stakes in Royal Mail and West Ham United is set to rake in almost £220m as his European energy group benefits from high electricity costs.
Daniel Kretinsky (pictured right) is known in City circles as the Czech Sphinx for his inscrutable approach to investing.
He saw his company Energeticky a prumyslovy holding (EPH)’s profits rise to £1.7 billion in the first six months of 2023 from £1.1 billion a year earlier, although sales fell to £12 billion from £13.1 billion in 2022 .9 billion pounds fell.
EPH controls energy assets across Europe and is a major player in the UK. The company owns sites such as Ballylumford, Northern Ireland’s largest gas-fired power station, and the Lynemouth biomass power station in Northumberland.
The billionaire controls 26 percent of Royal Mail’s parent company, International Distributions Services, as well as almost 10 percent of Sainsbury’s through his Vesa Equity. He also owns a 27 percent stake in West Ham United.
According to its most recent financial statements, EPH paid out dividends of £438 million in the first half of this year. This was in addition to the £492 million paid in 2022.
Kretinsky controls just over half of the company, meaning he stands to receive at least a £219m share of the distribution.
The tycoon’s huge fortune is estimated at around £7.4 billion. His girlfriend Anna Kellnerova is an Olympic show jumper and heiress to the fortune of Petr Kellner, who was considered the richest man in the Czech Republic before his death in a helicopter crash during a ski trip to Alaska in 2021.