Bob Parsons

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For other people of the same name, see Robert Parsons (disambiguation).
Bob Parsons
Bob Parsons.jpg
Born Robert Ralph Parsons
(1952-11-12) November 12, 1952 (age 62)
Baltimore, Maryland
Alma mater University of Baltimore
Baltimore, Maryland
Occupation

Founder & Director,
GoDaddy.com
Founder & CEO,
YAM Worldwide, Inc.

Founder,
The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation
Net worth Decrease US$ 1.85 billion (September 2014)[1]
Spouse(s) Renee Parsons
Website
www.TBRPF.org

Robert Parsons, better known as Bob Parsons, is an American entrepreneur and philanthropist. In 1997, he founded the Go Daddy group of companies, including domain name registrar GoDaddy.com, reseller registrar Wild West Domains and Blue Razor Domains.[2] In July 2011, Parsons sold approximately 70 percent of Go Daddy to a private equity consortium and resigned his position as CEO.[3][4] In June 2014, he stepped down from his position as Executive Chairman and currently serves on Go Daddy's board.[3][5] Parsons owns 28 percent of the company and is its largest shareholder.[6][7]

As of September 2014, Parsons had an estimated net worth of $1.85 billion and was ranked #353 on the Forbes 400 ranking of the world's wealthiest people.[1]

Parsons is the CEO and founder of YAM Worldwide, Inc., which is home to his entrepreneurial ventures in the fields of powersports, golf, real estate and marketing.[8]

In 2012, Parsons and his wife Renee founded The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation, which provides funding, primarily in the greater Phoenix area, to non-profit organizations.[9] In December 2013, they joined The Giving Pledge, an initiative started by Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett that requires signators to commit at least half of their fortunes to charity.[10]

Background[edit]

Parsons was born in Baltimore, Maryland. His family lived in Baltimore's inner city and struggled financially. Parsons has said about those days, "I've earned everything I've ever received. Very little was given to me. I've been working as long as I can remember. Whether it was delivering or selling newspapers, pumping gas, working in construction or in a factory, I've always been making my own money."[11]

After almost flunking out of high school, Parsons enlisted in the United States Marine Corps.[12][13] He was assigned to the 26th Marine Regiment which was attached to and operated as part of the 1st Marine Division. In 1969, he served as a rifleman in the Delta Company of the 1st Battalion, 26th Marines, during a tour of duty in Vietnam, in the Quảng Nam Province.[14]

He was wounded on duty, medically evacuated and spent two months at a naval hospital recovering from his wounds. As a result of his service and injury, he earned the Combat Action Ribbon, the Vietnam Gallantry Cross and the Purple Heart.[15]

Education[edit]

In 1975, Parsons obtained an accounting degree from the University of Baltimore, graduating magna cum laude.[16] He began his long-term career in software as a self-taught programmer.[17]

The University of Baltimore conferred an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree on May 21, 2008.[18]

Parsons Technology[edit]

In 1984, he founded Parsons Technology in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and began selling MoneyCounts, a home accounting program. In late 1987, Parsons was able to quit his job and focus completely on selling and programming MoneyCounts. Eventually, Parsons Technology grew to be a 1,000-employee privately held company. On September 27, 1994, Parsons completed the sale of Parsons Technology to Intuit for $64 million.[19]

Go Daddy[edit]

Parsons founded the Internet domain registrar and Web hosting company Go Daddy in 1997.[2] In July 2011, Parsons sold approximately 70 percent of Go Daddy to a private equity consortium led by KKR & Co. L.P. and Silver Lake, and resigned his position as CEO.[3][4] In June 2014, Parsons stepped down from his position as Executive Chairman. He currently serves on Go Daddy's board.[3][5] Parsons owns 28 percent of the company and is its largest shareholder.[6]

YAM Worldwide, Inc.[edit]

In 2012, Parsons founded the Scottsdale, AZ-based YAM Worldwide Inc., “home of [Parsons’] entrepreneurship operations…in the fields of power sports, golf, real estate, marketing, innovation and philanthropy.”[8][20][21]

YAM Capital is YAM Worldwide’s private lending and investment arm, specializing in commercial real estate lending and acquisition of closely-held middle-market companies.[22][23]

In 2013, Parsons acquired Martz Agency, a 25-employee public relations firm in Scottsdale, AZ. Martz Agency’s founder, Carrie Martz, serves as CEO of the new Martz Parsons public relations firm.[24]

Motorcycle dealerships[edit]

YAM Worldwide subsidiaries LZ Delta, L.L.C. and MS LZ Delta, L.L.C. operate Harley-Davidson and multi-brand motorcycle dealerships in Arizona, Mississippi, and Tennessee.[25] They include:

  • Go AZ Motorcycles (multi-brand dealership), Scottsdale, AZ
  • Harley-Davidson of Scottsdale, Scottsdale, AZ
  • Southern Thunder Harley-Davidson, Southaven, MS
  • Graceland Harley-Davidson, Memphis, TN
  • Blues City Harley-Davidson, Memphis, TN

Parsons is also founder and CEO of Scottsdale-based Spooky Fast Customs, which creates customized motorcycle designs and fabrications.[26]

In April 2014, Parsons announced plans to build the “world’s largest Harley-Davidson dealership” in Scottsdale.[26]

Golf[edit]

In September 2013, Parsons purchased The Golf Club Scottsdale, a 292-acre members-only golf course, for $600,000 and undisclosed debt, and renamed it “Scottsdale National Golf Club.”[27][28] In 2014, Parsons purchased undeveloped properties adjacent to his golf course including a 223-acre parcel for a reported $55 million, a 41-acre parcel for $5.4 million, and a smaller tract for $2.3 million.[29] Also in 2014, Parsons announced plans to build a new clubhouse, nine-hole practice facility, and second 18-hole golf course on the property.[28]

Parsons Xtreme Golf (PXG)[edit]

In January 2015, Parsons launched Parsons Xtreme Golf (PXG), a high-end golf club manufacturing company.[30][31] The same month, professional golfer Ryan Moore used prototype PXG irons and wedges when he played in the Hyundai Tournament of Champions, a PGA Tour event.[31] PXG is expected to launch a full line of golf equipment including drivers, fairway woods, hybrids, irons, wedges and putters.[31][32]

Real estate holdings[edit]

Since 2012, YAM Properties has purchased more than 675,000 square feet of commercial real estate in Arizona’s Valley of the Sun region.[33] YAM properties include:

  • Scottsdale Grayhawk Center, 147,084-square-foot retail plaza, acquired for $36.885 million[34][35]
  • Retail and office projects Citadelle Plaza and II Palazzo, acquired for $27.3 million[36]
  • Arrowhead Professional Center, a 71,066-square-foot office project, acquired for $13.25 million[37]
  • Retail space in two properties that total 66,983 square feet, acquired for $8.575 million[38]
  • McDowell Mountain Marketplace, an 84,087-square-foot retail center, acquired for $14.125 million[35]
  • Centerpoint on Mill, a 127,027-square-foot mixed-use development, acquired for $38.35 million[38][39]
  • Hayden Station, a 107,508-square-foot mixed-used development, acquired for $26.5 million[40]
  • The Cornerstone shopping center, acquired for $29 million[41]

The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation[edit]

In 2012 Bob Parsons and his wife, Renee, created The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation to provide funding, primarily in the greater Phoenix area, to non-profit organizations.[9] Among those organizations that have received support from the Foundation are Maggie’s Place, which assists pregnant and parenting women in need; the Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS; homeless shelter provider UMOM New Day Centers and Circle the City, a medical respite center for the homeless; the Semper Fi Foundation; Make-A-Wish Arizona; and also schools, medical services and communities in rural Haiti through the organization Hope for Haiti.[42][43][44][45][46][47][48]

In December 2013, Bob and Renee Parsons joined The Giving Pledge,[49] an initiative started by Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett that requires signators to commit at least half of their fortunes to charity.[50][51]

In June 2014, Bob and Renee Parsons participated in the Ice Bucket Challenge, which promotes awareness of the disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and encourages donations.[52] Parsons donated $100,000 to ALS Arizona.[53]

Elephant controversy[edit]

In 2011, Parsons was denounced by animal rights and other groups for tweeting a video in which he shoots and kills an elephant in Zimbabwe. In response to the shooting, Gawker called Parsons "insane"[54] and "ridiculous."[55] NBC News said "It's definitely the kind of thing only a super rich CEO/founder of a privately-held company could get away with."[56]

In response to the criticism, Parsons explained, "The tribal authorities requested that I and others like me patrol the fields before and during the harvest".[57] He also said that by shooting leopards and elephants, he has been helping the local population. He has also stated that he believes the opposition to him only exists within small organizations who are not his customers.[58]

Political activities[edit]

In 2012, Parsons donated $1 million to Restore Our Future, Mitt Romney's Super PAC.[59]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Bob Parsons: Real Time Net Worth". Forbes. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Sanders, Monica. "Rags to Riches: Bob Parsons, Founder of GoDaddy.com". LegalZoom. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  3. ^ a b c d Damouni, Nadia. "KKR, Silver Lake to buy Go Daddy for $2.25 billion: sources". Reuters. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  4. ^ a b Bort, Julie. "Why GoDaddy's Founder Bob Parsons Is Leaving The Company". Business Insider. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  5. ^ a b Bishop, Todd. "GoDaddy files for $100 million IPO, founder Bob Parsons resigns as chairman". GeekWire. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  6. ^ a b Whitford, David. "GoDaddy Founder Bob Parsons: Entrepreneurship Is 'a Little Spooky'". Inc.com. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  7. ^ Russ Wiles and Angelique Soenarie. "GoDaddy plans initial public offering of stock; chairman Bob Parsons to step down". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  8. ^ a b "Company Overview of YAM Worldwide Inc.". Bloomberg Business. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  9. ^ a b Anderson, J. Craig. "Go Daddy exec, wife plan major philanthropic effort". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  10. ^ "More billionaires pledge to give away fortunes". CNN Money. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  11. ^ Bob Parsons blog
  12. ^ Sloan, Paul (February 28, 2007). "Who's Your Go Daddy?". CNN Money. Retrieved September 23, 2010. 
  13. ^ David, Andersen; Lameen Witter (February 17, 2006). "Former Marine, Go Daddy CEO Talks About His Rise to Success". Marine Corps News. Retrieved 2006-06-02. 
  14. ^ Draper, John (December 7, 2005). "GoDaddy's Remarkable Daddy". Worthwhile. Archived from the original on June 30, 2006. Retrieved 2006-06-02. 
  15. ^ Jackson, Ron (October 2004). "Underachiever to Overlord: Go Daddy's Bob Parsons Started Slow Then Built Two Business Empires". Domain Name Journal. Retrieved 2006-06-02. 
  16. ^ "University of Baltimore". University Relations. April 10, 2010. Retrieved 2010-07-20. 
  17. ^ Sloan, Paul. "Who's Your Go Daddy?". CNN Money. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  18. ^ Larson, Jane (May 28, 2008). "Go Daddy extends sponsorship of Danica Patrick". The Arizona Republic (Gannett). Retrieved 2008-05-29. 
  19. ^ "Form:10-Q". SEC Edgar Filing Information. June 12, 1996. Retrieved 2006-06-02. 
  20. ^ "Robert R. Parsons CPA". Bloomberg. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  21. ^ "YAM Worldwide Overview". YAM Worldwide. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  22. ^ "YAM Capital". YAM Capital. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  23. ^ Ringle, Hayley. "Parsons planning big things for Martz after purchase". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  24. ^ Ringle, Hayley. "Bob Parsons buys Scottsdale PR firm Martz Agency". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  25. ^ "GoDaddy Founder Bob Parsons Acquires Harley-Davidson Dealership". Motorcycle & Powersports News. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  26. ^ a b Corbett, Peter. "GoDaddy founder plans largest Harley dealership". azcentral.com. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  27. ^ Hansen, Kristena. "Bob Parsons buys Golf Club Scottsdale in latest big real estate deal". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  28. ^ a b Duthie, Chris. "Scottsdale National Gains Traction". Colorado AvidGolfer. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  29. ^ Sunnucks, Mike. "Bob Parsons buying more land next to his Scottsdale country club". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  30. ^ Newman, Matt. "GoDaddy Founder Bob Parsons Debuts Parsons Xtreme Golf". Golf.com. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  31. ^ a b c Arbon, Travis. "GoDaddy founder takes a swing at the golf industry with newest venture". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  32. ^ Kozuchowski, Zak. "First Look: Parsons Xtreme Golf Irons". GolfWRX. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  33. ^ "About YAM Properties". YAM Properties. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  34. ^ Hansen, Kristena. "Go Daddy's Bob Parsons buys Scottsdale real estate for $37 million". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  35. ^ a b Dionne, Paul. "MetLife Sells Scottsdale Shopping Center to Bob Parsons of GoDaddy". Vizzda.com. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  36. ^ Hansen, Kristena. "Go Daddy's Bob Parsons plunks down $27.3M for Glendale property". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  37. ^ Hansen, Kristena. "Go Daddy's Bob Parsons buys Glendale office project for $13M". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  38. ^ a b "GoDaddy Founder Keeps Rolling...Adds Centerpoint On Mill to Valley Holdings". Business Real Estate Weekly of Arizona. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  39. ^ Hansen, Kristena. "Tempe's Centerpoint on Mill sold to Bob Parsons for $38 million". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  40. ^ Hansen, Kristena. "Parsons buys Hayden station for $26.5 million". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  41. ^ Sunnucks, Mike. "Bob Parsons buys Tempe center next to ASU for $29M". Phoenix Business Journal. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  42. ^ "Maggie’s Place Receives $600,000 Grant from The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation". Maggie’s Place. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  43. ^ "The Parsons Center for Health and Wellness Officially Opens its Doors November 1". Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  44. ^ "UMOM New Day Centers Names its Campus in Honor of The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation". UMOM New Day Centers. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  45. ^ "Parsons Foundation Awards $2 Million to Aid Phoenix-Area Homeless". Philanthropy News Digest. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  46. ^ Held, Tom. "GoDaddy Founder Doubles Up His Year-End Donation for Veterans’ Care". The Chronicle of Philanthropy. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  47. ^ "The Bob and Renee Parsons Foundation". Make-A-Wish Arizona. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  48. ^ Goldberg, Eleanor. "GoDaddy Former CEO Bob Parsons Pledges Half Of Wealth To Charity". Huffington Post. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  49. ^ "This Holiday Season Seven Billionaires Join Expanding Giving Pledge Club". Forbes. 2013-12-10. 
  50. ^ "Arizona Billionaire Giving Away His Fortune". ABC15. 2014-01-30. 
  51. ^ "Surpassing $34MM Giving The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation Reflects on a Momentous Year". 2014-02-14. 
  52. ^ "Bob Parsons". Ice Bucket Challenge. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  53. ^ "Multi-dealership owner Parsons donates $100,000 in Ice Bucket Challenge". PowerSports Business. Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  54. ^ Chen, Adrian. "Has GoDaddy's Elephant-Killing CEO Finally Gone Too Far?". Gawker.com. 
  55. ^ Chen, Adrian. "Meet GoDaddy's Ridiculous Elephant-Killing CEO". Gawker.com. Retrieved 2014-02-02. 
  56. ^ "GoDaddy CEO kills elephant, videotapes act". NBC News Business Insider. Retrieved 2014-02-02. 
  57. ^ Kelly Burgess, Kelly (April 1, 2011). "GoDaddy.com CEO Bob Parsons under fire for Zimbabwe elephant-hunting video". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-04-13. 
  58. ^ Cooper, Charles (March 31, 2011). "GoDaddy CEO: Elephant hunts help the locals". CBS News. Retrieved 2011-03-31. 
  59. ^ Schouten, Fredreka (21 September 2012). "Romney has campaign debt, less cash on hand". USA Today. Retrieved 1 December 2013. 

External links[edit]