Date
18 October 2017
Klaus Zapf lived on less than US$300 a month, although when he died on Aug. 20, he had an estimated fortune of US$17 million. Photo: Der Tagesspiegel
Klaus Zapf lived on less than US$300 a month, although when he died on Aug. 20, he had an estimated fortune of US$17 million. Photo: Der Tagesspiegel

Klaus Zapf, German millionaire who shunned wealth, dies

Klaus Zapf, a German millionaire who shunned the trappings of wealth, has died from a heart attack at the age of 62, BBC News reported.

Known for his frugal lifestyle, Zapf once said he collected empty bottles to reclaim the deposit and only shopped at supermarkets with the lowest prices, the report said.

Some accounts said he lived on less than £300 (US$497) a month, although when he died on Aug. 20, he had an estimated fortune of £10 million tied up in Zapf Umzuge, one of Europe’s largest relocation companies, according to Daily Mail.

“I don’t need money. It just makes us unequal,” he was quoted as saying.

During his student years, Zapf was deeply involved in Germany’s socialist movement. But after dropping out of college, he established his removals company in Berlin in 1975.

Zapf never got a driving license, so he relied on others to drive the transit van while he did the heavy lifting and later moved into management, the BBC said.

When the Berlin Wall came down, he predicted that the capital would move from Bonn to Berlin, leading him to set up a depot there and get the lion’s share of the moving business.

The company now has some 600 employees and more than 60,000 customers per year at 14 different locations.

Zapf, who married twice — most recently in June this year — leaves behind a daughter, the report said.

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CG

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