ASOS billionaire Anders Holch Povlsen – the biggest individual private landowner in Scotland – lost three of his four children in one of the Easter Sunday suicide bombings
ASOS billionaire Anders Holch Povlsen revealed his plans to give his Scottish estates to his four children just days before three were killed in theSri Lanka terror attacks.
Mr Povlsen – Scotlands biggest individual private landowner – has more than 220,000 acres in the Highlands and has launched an ambitious project to return the land to its natural state.
In an open letter posted just days ago, the 46-year-old said he and his wife Anne Storm Pedersen, 40, would pass on their 12 estates – and their rewilding project – to their children when they die.
Mr Povlsen set out his ambitions for his land in Scotland and admitted he will not live to see the rewilding of his estates, previously calling it a 200-year vision.
Alma Povlsen posted a photo of her three siblings just days ago
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The billionaire wrote: From our home at Glenfeshie, both Anne and myself our children and our parents too have long enjoyed a deep connection with this magnificent landscape.
As the holdings have grown and our common vision for the work becomes ever clearer, we have incorporated the entirety of the project into a venture we call Wildland.
Its a significant and lifelong commitment that we have made – not just for ourselves but for the Scottish people and Scottish nature too – a commitment which we believe in deeply.
The Povlsens were visiting Sri Lanka over the Easter holiday when a series of suicide bombings allegedly carried out by Islamic extremists left 290 people dead, including eight Britons, at churches and hotels.
Three days before the attacks Mr Povlsens daughter Alma shared a family holiday photo of her siblings Astrid, Agnes and Alfred – calling them three little bears – in front of a swimming pool lined by palm trees.
Mr Povlsen and his wife have not said which of their three children died in one of the bombings.
Denmarks richest man owns the Bestseller clothing chain and is the biggest stakeholder in ASOS.
Mr Povlsen, who reportedly has a net worth of 4.5bn, is the second-largest individual private landowner in the UK after spending upwards of 100million on a dozen estates in Scotland.
The 12,600-acre Lynaberack estate is owned by the billionaire and his wife
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The billionaire, who inherited his parents fortune when he was 28, fell in love with the Highlands on a family holiday in the 1980s when he was a young boy, and started snapping up land about 13 years ago.
When they arent staying at a former royal palace near Aarhus in Denmark, the Povlsens reside at 42,000-acre Glenfeshie in the Cairngorms after Mr Povlsen acquired the property for 7.9million in 2006.
In 2008, he bought the 23,000-acre Braeroy estate near Fort William, the nearby Tulloch estate and Lynaberack in the Cairngorms for 15.5million.
He added four more properties between 2011 and 2015, and three in 2016.
Mr Povlsen is returning his land in Scotland back to its natural state
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Late last year, it emerged that the couple had bought the 1,100-acre Kinrara estate near Aviemore.
The land that he owns covers an area half the size of Worcestershire.
The Povlsens, who rarely give interviews, wrote of their rewilding vision: That responsibility has evolved to become a labour of love; a project that we are deeply passionate about.
It is a project that we know cannot be realised in our lifetime, which will bear fruit not just for our own children but also for the generations of visitors who, like us, hold a deep affection the Scottish Highlands.
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They added: We wish to restore our parts of the Highlands to their former magnificent natural state and repair the harm that man has inflicted on them.
There are many vulnerable properties across all of the holdings that we have the wonderful and privileged opportunity to rehabilitate and restore to life; there are also archaeologically important structures that we have the responsibility to protect.
The couple are restoring native woodlands, peatlands, wetland and rivers to their natural state, while trying to boost the number of threatened animals including golden eagles, wildcats, red squirrels and capercaillies.
Their plans include making the land more accessible to visitors, restoring abandoned buildings and educating children about conservation.
They met when she began working in sales for Bestseller, the company that was founded by his father Troels in 1975 and grew into a family empire with brands including ASOS, Jack & Jones and Vero Moda.
The rewilding project has been praised but it has also received criticism from some landowners over large deer culls intended to reduce grazing pressure.
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