“A political failure”: this Austrian woman inherited 25 million euros and decided to redistribute them

In September 2022, upon the death of her grandmother, Marlene Engelhorn inherited 25 million euros. In fact, the 31-year-old Austrian is the great-granddaughter of Friedrich Engelhorn, the founder of chemical and pharmaceutical giant BASF. Dying in 1902, he left an enormous legacy to his descendants.

But 120 years later, Marlene Engelhorn discovered her share of the family fortune and didn't want it. She feels that it is not fair to receive money that she did not work for. He wants his inheritance to be taxed so that society can benefit, but in Austria, inheritance is not subject to tax.

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Because I am in this world, in this particular family, with this, I have this money because the government has failed to fulfill its mandate to ensure that wealth is distributed in society so that it does not end up in my hands equally. last name“, he points out in a press release. The young activist explains how he thought about coping “Failure of politics“: By setting up a citizens' council, he decided to redistribute his 25 million euros.

Specifically, 10,000 randomly selected Austrians will receive a letter inviting them to be part of a “good council for redistribution.” If they wish, they can register for action, and then 50 of them will be elected “sitting” on the council, as well as 15 alternate members. These citizens will participate in a series of meetings with academics and civil organizations between March and June to establish to whom the 25 million euros will be redistributed and for what purpose.

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