Public Figure Profiles

Guus Kessler

Jean Baptiste August "Guus" Kessler Jr. (16 June 1888, in The Hague – 5 November 1972, in The Hague) was a Dutch industrialist. Kessler also played tennis for the Netherlands in the 1906 Olympics in Athens, losing his first match to future Olympic champion Max Decugis.

Kessler was born in a very wealthy family from The Hague, the second son of six children. His father Jean Baptiste August Kessler (1853–1900) was the first director of the Koninklijke Nederlandse Petroleum Maatschappij (Royal Dutch Petroleum Company), now named Royal Dutch Shell. Guus studied engineering at Delft University.

Both Guus and his older brother Geldolph Adriaan Kessler were considered the "crown princes" of the Royal Dutch, but after their father died unexpectedly they had to work under their father's domineering successor, Henri Deterding. Dolf eventually left, at the urging of his fiancé, and helped create and lead the Dutch steel company Hoogovens. Guus, by contrast, seemed to get along better with Deterding. "The brothers were also strong willed but only Guus, the younger son, succeeded in controlling his emotions and avoiding coming into conflict with Deterding, in order to reach his ultimate goal," wrote Joost Junker and Jan Luiten van Zandem in their history of the company. The two brothers, as leading figures in two major Dutch business concerns, at one point formed a joint venture between the Hoogovens and Royal Dutch Shell to combat a threat to the oil business by IG Farben. Guus, who became a director of Royal Dutch in 1923, was instrumental in leading Shell into the petroleum-based chemicals business.Guus was the "obvious candidate" to lead Royal Dutch Shell after Deterding was forced out in 1936, but instead he was passed over in favor of a compromise choice. "It must have been a huge disappointment to Kessler to see his life's ambition thwarted with fulfillment so near." He eventually achieved his dream and became director-general of Royal Dutch Shell in the years 1947–1949, retiring at age 60. For the next 12 years, he served as president-commissioner of the company.

Guus and his first wife, Anna Francoise "Ans" Kessler-Stoop (1889–1983), had five daughters and one son. In 1932, they commissioned the noted French Fauvist Raoul Dufy to paint a portrait of the family on their horses, a work that now hangs in the Tate Collection in London. Ans was a noted collector of modern art, advised by her uncle C. Frank Stoop, and donated to the Tate Collection a substantial portfolio that included works by Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Amedeo Modigliani and Edgar Degas. She purchased a Vincent van Gogh painting on paper in 1930 and it was sold at auction for 8.8 million British pounds in 1997 by a family trust.

The marriage of Guus and Ans ended in divorce. He married Thalia "Lia" de Kempenaer (1917–2000) in 1948.

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Some of their strengths

Guus Kessler has many admirable traits.

Based on spiritual traditions from around the world, they are someone who can be described as Imaginative, Intelligent, Creative, Energetic, Passionate, Communicative, and Kind.

Charming and Quick-witted

According to Mysticism’s Astrology tradition, Guus Kessler is someone who is a charming, quick-witted, and energetic person who combines passion and intelligence with an ability to feel what others are feeling and to effectively communicate with them. A person who is a bit of a "lone wolf".

Active and Precise

Based on Daoism’s Ba-Zi or ‘Chinese Zodiac’ tradition, people who know Guus Kessler well know them as someone who can be tough, active, and sharp, like a sword.

Imaginative and Sentimental

According to Hinduism’s Jyotisha or ‘Vedic Astrology’ tradition, many would also describe Guus Kessler as someone who is imaginative, sentimental, and in touch with emotions.

A person who has extremely good memory and analytical skills, likes to make sure that everyone gets along, enjoys all kinds of situations and people, has a talent for travel and languages, and who makes lifelong friends.

Communicative and Intelligent

Based on the Mayan Tzolk’in or ‘Mayan Astrology’ tradition, Guus Kessler is someone who tends to have a desire to communicate with others, either verbally, through written form, or otherwise, and to have a knack for understanding art, beauty, and aesthetics.

They are also someone who is altruistic, tolerant, and sophisticated, and who tends to be a perfectionist who is always working to try and make everything and everyone better.

Logical and Reasonable

According to Judaism’s Kabbalah tradition, Guus Kessler tends to be someone who is understanding, logical, and reasonable. Who can be intellectual and intuitive, speak the truth at any cost, be witty and sociable, and live life to its fullest.

Some of Guus Kessler's challenges

While Guus Kessler has many strengths, nobody is perfect. They also have some challenging traits they need to manage.

For example, Guus Kessler can be Irritable, Sensitive, Hypocritical, Self-centered, Difficult, Perfectionist, and Emotional.

Hypocritical and Self-centered

One of Guus Kessler's key challenges is that they are someone who can be perceived as hypocritical and self-centered.

Irritable and Moody

Guus Kessler is someone who can be irritable and moody, have a tendency to experience self-doubt, be too secretive, can take too many risks, and who can have an extreme approach to managing personal finances.

Indecisive and Distracted

Finally, Guus Kessler also can have a hard time staying focused and can easily become restless.

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