Rainer Schaller, a trailblazer in the fitness industry and founder of the RSG Group, left a lasting impact on the health and wellness world.
With his humble beginnings in West Germany and a background in retail, Schaller built a fitness empire spanning 48 countries and touching millions of lives. A creative visionary and entrepreneur, Schaller’s life was filled with success, challenges, and, ultimately, tragedy.
In this article, we take a closer look at the life of Rainer Schaller, his achievements, his personal life, and the legacy he left behind after the heartbreaking plane crash that took his life.
Rainer Schaller Early Life
Rainer Schaller was born in West Germany on November 18, 1942. He grew up with a family background in retail and became the youngest CEO of an Edeka supermarket at age 22.
Schaller’s brother Gerd Schaller is a notable conductor and Anton Bruckner expert who has received several awards for his work in music education.
Rainer took over his brother’s orchestra when he retired from conducting due to health issues; this led him to become more interested in conducting himself and studying music theory and history at the university level (he already had an undergraduate degree).
Rainer Schaller Career
Rainer Schaller was a fitness and wellness pioneer. He started his career by founding McFit, which grew into one of the largest chains in Germany.
After selling his stake in McFit, Rainer diversified his business interests by becoming managing director of Lopavent GmbH & Co KG and the Love Parade music festival organizer.
In 2010, he faced scrutiny for a tragic stampede during Love Parade but accepted moral responsibility for what happened on that day: “I accept my share of guilt.”
Rainer Schaller Personal Life
Rainer Schaller was romantically involved with his long-term partner, Christiane Schikorsky, with whom they shared two children, Aaron and Finja.
On October 21, Rainer and his family boarded a Piaggio P. 180 Avanti aircraft destined for Mexico.
Tragically, the jet carrying the affluent German family vanished en route from Palenque, Mexico.
The subsequent day, Costa Rica’s public security ministry announced the discovery of an adult and a minor’s bodies during their search efforts.
Originally planned to land at 6:58 pm, the aircraft tragically plummeted from an altitude of 2,000 feet. Onboard the Piaggio 180 jet were five German nationals, as confirmed by Jorge Torres, Costa Rica’s public security minister.
In due course, a McFit spokesperson verified that Schaller and his family were among the passengers. According to various reports, Schaller was one of six individuals who tragically lost their lives in the plane crash.
Rainer Schaller’s Net Worth
Rainer Schaller’s estimated net worth stands at a staggering $250 million. Rainer Schaller founded the McFit chain of fitness studios, which has become one of Europe’s largest operators.
The RSG Group, which he founded in 2003, includes 12 fitness chains and employs over 41,000 people across 48 countries.
Schaller first became interested in sports as a child when he played soccer for his local club team in Germany.
He later attended university, where he studied economics and business administration before going into marketing at Procter & Gamble (P&G).
He worked there for two years before deciding to start his own company; however, it wasn’t until 1999 that he would begin his journey into entrepreneurship with McFit–a chain now known as “the largest fitness studio operator in Europe.”