A spokeswoman for Haselsteiner, whose family foundation has a 25
percent stake in construction group Strabag, confirmed a report
in newspaper Die Presse on Tuesday that the Essl collection had
A new firm owned 60 percent by the Haselsteiner family
foundation and 40 percent by Essl family vehicles is paying more
than 100 million euros ($131 million) for the collection, the
paper said. The money would help shore up the BauMax group.
One of Europe's biggest modern art collections includes works by
major Austrian artists such as Oskar Kokoschka and Hermann
Nitsch and international names including Gerhard Richter, Sam
Francis and Anish Kapoor.
Austria in April turned down Essl's request to buy the
7,000-piece collection, rejecting his argument that 4,000 of the
more than 9,000 jobs in his struggling company were at risk if
it did not do so.
Loss-making BauMax had 158 outlets in nine countries as far
afield as Turkey -- a market it is quitting -- but ran into
trouble when the financial crisis crimped demand for DIY
supplies in eastern Europe.
(Reporting by Michael Shields, editing by David Evans)
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