"He sees himself as a long-term investor," CEO Steffen Greubel told reporters at a press event in Duesseldorf on Thursday evening.

Kretinsky holds stakes in a number of European companies, from the energy sector to media groups and retail. His investment vehicle is currently in talks with Thyssenkrupp's steel division over a 50-50 joint venture.

Kretinsky holds a 46% stake in Metro, which has wholesale customers in Europe and Asia, and operates as a retailer in the German grocery market.

When asked if he expected Kretinsky to exit Metro in view of his planned investments, Greubel said no, though he said the pace of restructuring at Metro was not as fast as its top shareholder would like.

"It's not fast enough for all of us," Greubel added.

The CEO hopes to concentrate Metro's business on wholesale, focusing on restaurants and hotels.

(Reporting by Matthias Inverardi; writing by Rachel More; editing by Jason Neely)