Monday, July 15, 2024

ARGENTINA | 14-06-2024 16:55

Businessman Gregorio Pérez Companc dies aged 89

Gregorio Pérez Companc was one of the most iconic businessmen in the last 40 years and had one of the top five fortunes in Argentina.

Businessman Gregorio 'Goyo' Pérez Companc, one of the most influential in the country and the longtime owner of food company Molinos Río de la Plata and energy company PeCom, died on Friday aged 89.

Always keeping a low profile, during his lifetime he took part in many big business deals, most of them in food, telecommunications and energy companies .

At the time of his death, he and his family group – the Perez Companc Family Group – reportedly had the second-highest net worth in Argentina, only behind Marcos Galperín, founder and CEO of Mercado Libre.

Forbes magazine had put him in the 782th position in the rankings of richest people on the planet, with an estimate fortune of US$4.2 billion.

In late May this year, three of his seven children purchased from their brothers the main companies in the group, an operation which meant a disbursement of US$550 million. Luis Pérez Companc and his sisters Rosario and Pilar kept control of Molinos Río de la Plata, Molinos Agro and oil company Pecom. 

In 1943, 'Goyo' entered the business world with his adoptive brother Carlos Perez Companc, when he founded his first company: the shipping company bearing his name, which he took over after the death of Carlos.

He also became the head of Banco Río de la Plata and SADE S.A.

After that, the businessman widely diversified his production investments and managed to consolidate his position as one of the most influential in the country though the PeCom Group, which is currently left to three of the tycoon’s seven children.


Adopted son

Pérez Companc was born in Buenos Aires on August 23, 1934 and according to the book Los dueños de la Argentina by journalist Luis Majul, he was the biological son of Benito Bazán and Juana Emiliana López, a humble couple who gave him up for adoption when he was 11 years old.

In 1946 he was adopted by Frenchwoman Margarita Companc de Pérez Acuña, who had been married to Ramón Pérez Acuña since 1907, with whom she had three children.

'Goyo' studied at the La Salle School in Buenos Aires (he had dropped out of university).

His adoptive family had founded the company San Benito, back in 1919, which raised sheep for the marketing of wool.  In 1946, the Perez Compancs purchased two World War II barges from the United States, and with them they created their own shipping company; ten years later they bought Forestry Establishment San Jorge, in Misiones, while in 1958 Oil Company Perez Companc began operating.

He married María del Carmen 'Munchi' Sundblad Beccar Varela in 1964, with whom he had seven children: Catalina, Cecilia, Jorge, Luis, Pablo, Pilar and Rosario.



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