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Spar Austria Founder Luis Drexel Passes Away

Published on Oct 17 2019 11:00 AM in Retail tagged: Spar International / Spar Austria / Luis Drexel

Spar Austria Founder Luis Drexel Passes Away

Luis Drexel, the founder of Spar Austria, has passed away at the age of 95.

He had a decisive influence on the retail industry and played a pivotal role in shaping Spar's business in Austria.

Born in Vorarlberg, he was the last surviving founding father of Spar Austria.

Building The Business

In 1957, Drexel in association with his father Johann and brothers Herbert and Hans started building the Spar retail chain in the Vorarlberg region.

Spar was run by ten independent regional partners in Austria until 1970, when Drexel laid the foundation of the united Spar Austria business.

He took on the role of the chairman of the board, a position held for the next 20 years.

He also served as the president of the Spar Austria retailer association for 25 years and was the president of the Spar Austria Supervisory Board for 11 years.

In his role as the president of Spar International for 20 years, he was instrumental in the growth of the brand at a global level.

Drexel served as the CEO of Spar Austria when the first Interspar Hypermarkets were launched and the Spar store network was built and extended into new business areas.


Drexel received many awards in recognition of his entrepreneurial courage, prudence, and extraordinary life’s work.

Prominent among these were the Grand Golden Medal of Honour for Services to the Republic of Austria and the Golden Medal of Honour of the Province of Vorarlberg.

He was also the recipient of a lifetime achievement award from the Vorarlberger State of Affairs.

In 2018, the was awarded the first 'Austrian Trade Award for outstanding performance in domestic trade' from the Austrian Trade Association.

Spar International awarded him the Van Well Medal, the highest honour of the retail group.

He also received the highest award in Spar Austria - Spar honorary ring.

He is survived by his wife Maria, son Gerhard Drexel, the current CEO of Spar Austria, and three daughters and their families.

© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.

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