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She was born Johanna Bruhn in 1926. She became a secretary in Herbert’s office in the 1950s and eventually became his personal assistant. She married Herbert in 1960. After Herbert’s death in 1982, she became a major shareholder in BMW, and sat on its supervisory board until she retired in 1997. She still owns 16.7% of BMW. The two children of her marriage, Stefan Quandt and Susanne Klatten, are also substantial shareholders in BMW and now sit on the supervisory board of BMW. Johanna lives quietly in Bad Homburg. She supports child-cancer institutes and is a major donor to political parties.
A programme by the German public broadcaster, ARD, in October 2007 described in detail the role of the Quandt family businesses during the Second World War. As a result, four family members announced, on behalf of the entire Quandt family, their intention to fund a research project in which a historian will examine the family’s activities during Hitler’s dictatorship.
The Quandt family is estimated to be worth $29.4 billion in 2014.
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