$2.1 billion in investments: the history of success of the investment fund Guggenheim's head

Billionaire Mark Walter is a man so non-public, that few people noticed how he had managed to create a successful financial empire, enter the Forbes list and purchase a baseball club, while not forgetting about philanthropy.
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He carefully guards his privacy and consistently reject requests for an interview. Perhaps this is the secret of the success of the humble native of the middle class, which, even earning billions, he was able to keep the good reputation, well-earned in his student years.

Coming from a middle class

Mark Walter was born in 1960 in the small town of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, the son of a typical middle-class. His father, Edward worked at the factory for the production of concrete blocks, and Bernadine's mother was a housewife. The parents were married in 1948 and has been continuously lived in Cedar Rapids. Mark grew up with his brother Patrick and sister Barbara and Mary.

Mark since childhood interest in sports and loved to play with his father a couple in front of house in baseball. In Cedar Rapids was not a professional baseball team, and a small mark, listening to sports radio broadcasts, rooting for everybody: for the Minnesota Twins, is for St. Louis Cardinals, for the Chicago Cubs. He stopped at the last club in the conscious age, when settled in Chicago. The first match between professional baseball teams he posmethyl only when he was already over 20. Today, he regularly leads his daughter Samantha's home arena Chicago Cubs «Wrigley Field."

In 1982 Mark graduated from Creighton University, majoring in "Accounting", and three years later - the North-West University, majoring in "Jurisprudence". Fellow at school and university describes Walter: "He was one of the first course on performance, easy to communicate and not attract attention to himself. He never let anyone hurt and neither of whom are not teased. Even then, it could be said that such a good guy will be a success. His quick mind combined with the absence of any arrogance in dealing with others. "

After graduation, Mark did some work on a specialty, and then went into the brokerage business First Chicago Capital Markets, specializing in the sale of treasury bonds (treasuries), do not continue to become legal career.

In 1996 he founded the investment company Liberty Hampshire. In 1999, Marc met with Todd Morley, CEO of brokerage firm Links Securities, who previously worked with Peter Lawson Johnson clan Guggenhaymov, and the three entrepreneurs decide to create a common business. As a result of the merger of assets of the company is formed Guggenheim Partners - one of the leading US investment funds, the proportion in which Walter and must most of his fortune to $ 2.1 billion.


One of the leading US Guggenheim clan - descendants of emigrant Jews of Ashkenazi Meyer Guggenheim, who moved from Switzerland to the United States in 1847 and who later became an industrial magnate. Starting with the import of coffee and spices, then the entrepreneur engaged in the extraction and processing of ore, and on what has earned the bulk of his fortune.

Meyer Guggenheim had eleven children. Five sons, including a well-known philanthropist and founder of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Solomon Robert Guggenheim, acquired a share in his father's business. Solomon Guggenheim - grandfather co-founder of Guggenheim Partners Peter Lawson Johnson.

In the XIX century, the Guggenheim was one of the richest families in the world. Later they became known for his philanthropy. In honor of the representatives of the clan named several museums, as well as Aeronautical Laboratory nand the California Institute of Technology and the pavilion in one of the oldest and largest medical complexes USA "Mount Sinai" in New York.

Guggenheim sold its mining business after World War I and hired an external management to manage their assets.

The humble benefactor

Mark's wife, Kimbrough, the specialty is also a lawyer. The couple have one daughter - Samantha. They live in Lincoln Park, one of the most expensive and prestigious areas of Chicago.

"Hold them very modestly - describes the family Zrinski Christine Walter," Lincoln Park "vice president of development of the zoo, where Kimbrough is listed one of the trustees, and Mark, a representative of Guggenheim Partners, - one of the main sponsors. - They are very unpretentious, very polite and very concerned about the city, preferring not to flash in public and not to engage in self-PR. "

According to the US Federal Election Commission, in 2011, Mark made a contribution of $ 30.8 thousand. The election headquarters of the Democratic Party, but also donated $ 5 thousand. For the campaign of 2012 the re-election of President Baraka Obama.

Walter support a variety of socially-oriented projects in Chicago. Mark - the trustee of the Guggenheim Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to the support of contemporary art. The Foundation operates four museums: the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice, the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao (Spain), as well as "the German Guggenheim" in Berlin. He also serves on the board of trustees at Fildovskom Museum of Natural History (The Field Museum of Natural History).

In 2014, Walter donated $ 40 million to his alma mater - Northwestern University in Illinois.

Business Mark Walter at a Glance

At $ 2.1 billion, estimated the state of Mark Walter Forbes magazine as at 3 September, putting it on the 1006-th place in the ranking of the richest people in the world and 351 th - among US billionaires

More than $ 240 billion company Guggenheim Partners estimates the market value of the assets it manages. Forbes 3 September figure brought $ 210 million.

About 45% of the shares owned by employees of Guggenheim Partners Company

About 30% of the company owned Corporationtion Sammons Enterprises

2.5 thousand. People working in more than 25 offices Guggenheim Partners in nine countries

The $ 2.15 billion cost Guggenheim buy American baseball team Los Angeles Dodgers in May 2012

Source: Forbes, the company's data

Business Guggenheim

The main asset of Guggenheim Partners - the investment and consulting company Guggenheim Investments. Both companies are private, neither the one nor the other did not disclose its financial results. According to Todd Boel, the general director of Guggenheim Investments, non-public status of the business - a big advantage Guggenheim Investments, which allows the company to follow the market conditions, and comprehensively analyze the growth strategy is not fell into the race for the increase in profits from quarter to quarter.

These principles have allowed Walter to turn the highly specialized financial firms into a successful diversified business covering investment banking, capital markets services, investment management and consulting services, insurance services, etc.

Despite underlined opacity on Wall Street for Guggenheim Partners has a reputation for a very active player finansovogon the market. The company was one of the few showed good performance during the peak of which began in 2008, the financial crisis and to lure many respected industry professionals.

In addition to traditional investments in stocks and bonds and the company invested in distressed assets with the expectation of their recovery and return to profitability. Under the control of Guggenheim Partners are a few hedge funds that use sophisticated trading strategies.

The portfolio of assets includes the Guggenheim Baseball Club Los Angeles Dodgers, Interteynment-company Dick Clark Productions, as well as several publications, including the Hollywood Reporter, Billboard and Adweek. In 2013, the Foundation has created a new division - Guggenheim Digital Media, with a view to acquisition of shares and investments in the segment of new media, making him head of no less than the former general director of Yahoo! Ross Levinson.

In 2012, the Fund was negotiating the purchase of the business of asset management of Deutsche Bank. If the transaction took place, the volume of assets under management Guggenheim would have surpassed $ 600 billion, but in the end the parties have not reached an agreement.

Inherited Club

One of the main achievements of the Marchas well as the general director of Guggenheim Partners was the acquisition in 2012 Los Angeles Dodgers professional baseball club, the speaker in the Western Division of Major League Baseball (MLB) in North America. The deal amounted to an impressive (and according to some experts, excessive) $ 2.15 billion. From the Guggenheim shareholder of the club was the company Guggenheim Baseball Management.

Walter, spending on the purchase of a significant portion of their own funds, became chairman and controlling owner of the club. Stake in the team also acquired his colleague Todd Boel Fund. According to Boel, in essence, this transaction was the infrastructure investments (team owns the stadium) with a significant proportion of fixed income in the income structure: the "Dodgers" signed 25-year contract to broadcast matches from the media holding Time Warner.

Through the deal, Walter joined the list of 50 most influential figures in the world of sports according to the SportsBusiness Journal, taking eighth place in the prestigious ranking. Co-investor club became legendary Los Angeles Lakers basketball player Irvin "Magic" Johnson.

According to analysts, the deal on the $500 million surpassed the competing proposals. Mark himself explained the high price market situation. "Inflated market price", - he stated, describing the deal as a long-term investment in the team, which will own, "the grandchildren of my daughter."

Becoming the owner of the club, Walter stepped back from the beginning of the operational management team. "I am a baseball fan, but I do not have the experience to take sports solutions, and I do not even want to pretend that it is" - the billionaire admitted, saying that his goal - to support the team and do my best for her.

In an interview with Los Angeles Times, Walter expressed his hope that the club will be one of the pillars of the Los Angeles community. "Things like this can be the basis of the order for philanthropy and other activities in the community, stimulate their development; in this world today is in need ", - said Mark.

Mr. invisibility

His rare interviews Walter gave for reasons of urgency. According to his confession, the press-conference dedicated to investment in Los Angeles Dodgers, was the only for himorym communication with the press.

"I non-public person," - once admitted he was a reporter Chicago Tribune, adding that the public's attention - not for him. "To be honest, I am convinced that if we work hard, then success is sure to come, and thus would have no impact on your personality. Yes, business is growing, increasing your wealth, but you remain the same, who was yesterday ", - says the billionaire.