Former tycoon Jón Ásgeir Jóhannesson told DV that far from being upset about his current financial situation, he is happier now than before, and doesn’t miss his old lifestyle.
Jón Ásgeir was at one point arguably one of the most powerful men in Iceland. A billionaire on paper, he had control over vast swaths of retail chains, the media, and investment companies.
“I have no grand dreams,” he told DV. He said it was a mistake to own a bank and continue to invest in Iceland. In the end, he admits he lost sight of his values, stretched himself too far, and should have put a stop to it in 2005.
No longer wanting to live the jet-set lifestyle he once enjoyed, he said he has no desire to return to Icelandic business life. “I’m happy with what I’m doing now,” he said. “I don’t want to go back to that lifestyle. It isn’t worth it.”
Jón Ásgeir’s empire came crashing down after investigations were launched that he had engaged in accounting fraud, both here in Iceland and abroad. This culminated in having his assets frozen. Many of the companies he once owned have since been sold off.