April 13, 2018 / 4:25 PM / 8 days ago

Family of missing German businessman give up hope he is alive

DUESSELDORF (Reuters) - The family of missing German retail boss Karl-Erivan Haub have given up hope of finding him alive, after he failed to return from an off-piste skiing tour in the Alps last weekend, they said on Friday.

A general view shows mount Matterhorn (R, 4478 metres/14687ft above sea level) and mount Klein Matterhorn (L, 3,883 m /12,740 ft), where missing German retail boss Karl-Erivan Haub was last seen on Saturday heading off from the Klein Matterhorn cable car station, near the Swiss Alpine resort of Zermatt, Switzerland April 12, 2018. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

Haub, an experienced skier, was last seen on Saturday heading off from the Klein Matterhorn cable car station in the Swiss canton of Valais, near the Italian frontier.

The 58-year-old businessman has run the Tengelmann group since 2000, which owns the OBI home improvement chain and the KiK fashion discounter.

“On behalf of the Haub family, we regret to announce that after over seven days in extremely challenging conditions in a glacier area, there is no longer a chance of survival for Karl-Erivan Haub,” Tengelmann said in a statement.

Rescuers are continuing to search for Haub so that his body can be recovered, the statement said.

Karl-Erivan Haub is the fifth generation of the family to run the business which was founded in 1867 as an importer of coffee and tea.

Karl-Erivan’s father, Erivan Haub, died last month on his U.S. ranch. Forbes magazine estimated his fortune at $6.4 billion.

Skiers are seen in front of mount Klein Matterhorn, where missing German retail boss Karl-Erivan Haub was last seen on Saturday heading off from the cable car station, near the Swiss Alpine resort of Zermatt, Switzerland April 12, 2018. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

Reporting by Matthias Inverardi; Writing by Victoria Bryan; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky

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