Forbes reveals the 10 most influential women in the Czech Republic

While women in politics have the most visibility and took the top spots, the influence of women in business is expanding the fastest.

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 03.06.2021 14:49:00 (updated on 03.06.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Alena Schillerová remains the most influential woman in the Czech Republic, according to an annual ranking by the Czech edition of business magazine Forbes. Eight of the top 10 spots were the same as last year’s list, with the inclusion of Renáta Kellnerová, the widow of Per Kellner, as the most significant addition.

Forbes ranked 150 women this year, the most ever and an increase of over 20 from the previous list. The magazine drew the list from 350 women it monitored in a broad array of sectors. While the top spots went to women in politics, Forbes pointed out that the influence of women is growing faster in the business sector than in either the public sector or non-governmental organizations.

Schillerová was chosen because of the extent of her influence over a wide area of the Czech economy.

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Alena Schillerová. (Photo:
Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Alena Schillerová. (Photo:

“If we measure the influence by the number of those directly affected by her decisions, there is still no more influential Czech woman than Alena Schillerová," Forbes editor-in-chief Petr Šimůnek said.

"In addition, her influence on various sectors and developments in the Czech Republic has even increased at the time of the current coronavirus crisis and its impacts," Šimůnek said.

The names in the second and third positions were also unchanged from last year: European Commission Vice President Věra Jourová and Prague High State Attorney Lenka Bradáčová.

European Commission Vice President of the for Values and Transparency Věra Jourová. (Photo: EC)
European Commission Vice President of the for Values and Transparency Věra Jourová. (Photo: EC)

Renáta Kellnerová, widow of billionaire and PPF group's majority owner Petr Kellner, jumped into fourth place. Petr Kellner, who had been the richest Czech, died in a March 27 helicopter crash. In May, his widow, Renáta, was declared the administrator of his property, She controls assets worth CZK 300 billion, although the inheritance proceedings are ongoing, according to Forbes.

"Mrs Kellnerova is also a member of the control committee that works as a body of advisers to the [PPF] current executive director Ladislav Bartoníček," Forbes stated.

Fifth place went to Kateřina Jirásková, chief financial officer (CFO) and chair of the board of directors, of PPF. Her influence in PFF has also increased since the passing of Kellner. She was fourth in the 2020 ranking.

Petra Procházková, the director and board member of agricultural and chemical firm Agrofert, was next in line in sixth place, dropping from fifth. Agrofert was built up by current Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, though he is not directly involved in its operations while he is in government.

Labor and Finance Minister Jana Maláčová. (Photo:
Labor and Finance Minister Jana Maláčová. (Photo:

The list returns to politics for the seventh spot – Labor and Finance Minister Jana Maláčová, who was in the same position in the previous list. In her government role, she has a lot of influence over wages and social benefits in the Czech Republic, and policy for cross-border workers.

ČEZ executive Michaela Chaloupková drops to eighth place from sixth. She is director of the energy giant’s administration division and a member of the board of directors. Her responsibilities include setting a sustainability strategy for the company, which historically relies heavily on fossil fuels.

Ninth place went to Agrofert board member Simona Sokolová, who held the same spot last year. Within Agrofert, she oversees 20 companies with a total of 7,000 employees.

Also new to the top 10 is Petra Kutnarová, co-owner of the construction material supplier DEK. The firm is the largest of its type in the Czech Republic.

Leaving the top 10 is Home Credit personnel director Renata Mrázová, who placed eighth last year but fell to 13th on the current list, and real estate owner and Women to Women NGO founder Ivana Tykač, who dropped to 12th after placing 10th last year.

Forbes has issued its rankings for the 10th time this year, monitoring over 350 women from politics, judiciary, the financial sector, business, culture, sport and non-profit organizations, In their assessments, Forbes representatives apply several criteria based on the U.S.-based Forbes' methods and consulting experts in a variety of the sectors concerned.

 Top 10 most influential women in the Czech Republic

  • 1.Alena Schillerová
  • 2.Věra Jourová
  • 3.Lenka Bradáčová
  • 4.Renáta Kellnerová
  • 5.Kateřina Jirásková
  • 6.Petra Procházková
  • 7.Jana Maláčová
  • 8.Michaela Chaloupková
  • 9.Simona Sokolová
  • 10.Petra Kutnarová


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