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Dublin: 10 °C Saturday 25 October, 2014

Billionaire inventor of Red Bull dies aged 80

Chaleo Yoovidhya was ranked as the 205th richest person in the world with an estimated fortune of €3.7 billion.

Image: Gareth Chaney/Photocall Ireland

THE THAI BILLIONAIRE who created Red Bull has died, according to the country’s state media. He was 80 years old.

Chaleo Yoovidhya had risen to become one of Thailand’s richest men with an estimated fortune of around €3.7 billion.

He had created the prototype of the energy drink in the 1970s and it became immediately popular among truck drivers, construction workers and farmers in Thailand.

In the early 1980s he co-founded a company with an Austrian entrepreneur to turn Red Bull into a global brand.

Forbes magazine had ranked Yoovidhya as the 205th richest person in the world last year and the third richest person in Thailand.  He had married twice and had a total of eleven children.

The state broadcaster MCOT said today that he had died of natural causes.

As well as the popular caffeine energy drink, Red Bull also owns two football teams and a formula one racing team.

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