FUCHL AM SEE, Austria – Mark Mateschitz, the heir to the Red Bull energy drink empire, received a 582 million euro ($615 million) dividend as his first payout since inheriting the company from his late father last year, according to documents filed in Austria’s corporate registry.
The Fuschl am See-based company distributed half of last year’s 1.56 billion euro profit among its shareholders, as per a shareholder resolution. With a 49% stake held through his holding company, Mateschitz was eligible for 383 million euros. The remaining 51% is owned by the Yoovidhya family in Thailand.
Mateschitz, Europe’s richest millennial, received an additional 199 million euros on top of the pro-rata distribution, continuing a long-standing tradition of making extra payments to Red Bull’s Austrian owner.
Red Bull Dividend Lowest in 3 Years
The total 582 million euro dividend is the lowest payout in three years for the energy drink maker, as rising marketing and production costs ate into profitability in 2022.
Mateschitz took control of Red Bull last year after the death of his father Dietrich, the company’s founder. The dividend was his first payout since inheriting the 18.4 billion euro Red Bull empire.
Despite the lower dividend, Red Bull continued its aggressive spending on sports sponsorships and marketing. Its total sponsorship payments exceeded 1 billion euros for the first time in 2022.
Red Bull’s Formula One racing team won the constructor’s championship last season, while its football club RB Leipzig finished fourth in Germany’s Bundesliga.
Financial Results Detail Rising Costs
Red Bull’s financial filings attribute the reduced dividend to rising costs across the board. While sales volumes hit a record high of 11 billion cans last year, driving net revenue up 6.5% to 9.68 billion euros, expenses grew at a faster pace.
The company’s cost of sales jumped 15% to 3.36 billion euros due to higher prices for cans, ingredients, and transportation. Distribution costs were up 13% at 2.28 billion euros.
Marketing expenses increased 12% to 3.23 billion euros as Red Bull continued expanding into new products and markets. General and administrative costs rose 11% to 790 million euros.
As a result, Red Bull’s operating profit declined by 1.4% to around 1.25 billion euros, squeezing the dividend payout.
New Products Target Growth Amidst Competition
Red Bull is aiming to reaccelerate growth through product innovations, such as its new Red Bull Zero calorie-free line released last year. It plans to expand sales of its organic cola drink and Red Bull Simply Cola.
The company faces rising competition in the energy drink market from brands like Monster, Rockstar, and Coca-Cola’s Coke Energy.
Red Bull held a 40% share of the global energy drink market in 2021, down from over 50% a decade ago. It remains the market leader but is seeking new products to stay ahead of rivals.
Billionaire Owner Avoids Spotlight
While Red Bull flooded TV screens and sports events with its branding last year, Mark Mateschitz maintains a very low public profile.
The press-shy billionaire rarely gives interviews or makes public appearances. After inheriting Red Bull, he did not address employees or make any public statement about his plans.
Mark’s father, Dietrich Mateschitz, also avoided the limelight for most of his career. He started Red Bull in the 1980s after discovering a popular Asian energy drink on a business trip.
The Austrian businessman built the brand into a global phenomenon and amassed an estimated $27 billion fortune by the time of his death in October 2022 at age 78.
Future of Red Bull Remains Unclear
It remains unclear how involved Mark Mateschitz will be in leading Red Bull into the future. At just 30 years old, he was thrust into control of the company after his father’s sudden death.
Dietrich Mateschitz had run Red Bull with complete authority since founding it. Some observers speculate that Mark may take a backseat role and delegate day-to-day management to long-time executives.
Others expect him to put his own stamp on Red Bull and pursue new directions, especially in emerging markets like Asia and Latin America. But for now, Mark is staying out of the public eye.
With another massive dividend in hand, the heir has ample time to decide the next moves for hisinherited billion-dollar beverage empire.