Skip to main content

Red Bull Co-Founder Has Passed Away At 78

Dietrich Mateschitz of Red Bull Racing and Austria

SPIELBERG, AUSTRIA - JULY 01: Max Verstappen of Red Bull Racing and The Netherlands with Dietrich Mateschitz of Red Bull Racing and Austria during the Formula One Grand Prix of Austria at Red Bull Ring on July 1, 2018 in Spielberg, Austria. (Photo by Peter Fox/Getty Images)

The sports world lost one of its most significant patrons today as Red Bull co-founder Dietrich Mateschitz passed away. He was 78 years old.

Born in Austria during World War II, Mateschitz went from being the owner and founder of a major softdrink company to owning teams in several of the most prominent sports in the entire world - Formula One racing and soccer.

Over the past two decades, Red Bull Racing, AlphaTauri, RB Leipzig, Red Bull Salzburg, the New York Red Bulls and a half dozen other teams have become powerhouses in their respective sports. 

The year 2022 alone has seen Red Bull's Max Verstappen win Formula One, while Leipzig and Salzburg have won soccer league titles. Red Bull Racing could secure their first Constructors Championship in over five years with a strong outing at the US Grand Prix this weekend.

Dietrich Mateschitz grew up living with his mother after his parents split when he was young. He graduated from Vienna University of Economics and Business in 1972 with a degree in marketing and made his early career marketing various products.

While working with the cosmetics company Blendax in Germany, Mateschitz traveled to southeast Asia, where he discovered an energy drink that he would bring back to Europe and marketed as "Red Bull."

The rest is history.

Mateschitz accumulated a net worth of over $25 billion in his four decades at the helm. 

In the early-2000s he would start acquiring sports teams - two Formula One teams, Austria's FC Salzburg, Germany's FC Liefering, and Major League Soccer's New York MetroStars - all of which were later rebranded with Red Bull in the name, and all of which have found greater success thanks to Mateschitz's investment into them.

Our hearts go out to Mateschitz's family and loved ones.