Kenneth C. Griffin

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For the organist, see Kenneth W. Griffin.
Kenneth C. Griffin
Kenneth Griffin.jpg
Born (1968-10-15) October 15, 1968 (age 46)
Daytona Beach, Florida, U.S.
Residence Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Alma mater Harvard University
Occupation Founder & CEO, Citadel
Salary $1.3 billion (2014)
Net worth Increase $6.6 billion (May 2015)[1]
Religion Presbyterian Christian[2]
Spouse(s) Anne Dias-Griffin (m. 2004)

Kenneth C. Griffin (born October 15, 1968, Daytona Beach, Florida) is an American hedge fund manager. Griffin is the founder and CEO of Citadel, a global investment firm.[3][4] With an estimated $25 billion in investment capital as of March 2015, Citadel is one of the world's largest alternative investment management firms.[5][6][7] Citadel's group of hedge funds rank among the largest and most successful hedge funds in the world.[3] Forbes identified Griffin as one of 2012’s highest earning hedge fund managers as well as one of the Forbes 400.[8]

Griffin had an estimated net worth of $6.6 billion in May 2015.[1] At the beginning of 2014, Griffin made a $150 million donation to the financial aid program at Harvard University, his alma mater. The donation was the largest single donation ever made to the institution at the time.[9][10] Griffin's donations to various organizations and causes have totaled about $500 million.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Kenneth C. Griffin was born in 1968 in Daytona Beach, Florida.[11][12] In 1986, Griffin started to invest during his freshman year at Harvard University after reading a Forbes magazine article.[13][14] During his second year at Harvard, he started a hedge fund focused on convertible bond arbitrage. The fund was capitalized with $265,000 from friends and family, including money from his grandmother.[11] He installed a satellite link to his dorm to acquire real-time market data. The investment strategy helped preserve capital during the stock market crash of 1987. Griffin's early success enabled him to launch a second fund, and between the two funds he was managing just over $1 million.[11][12] Griffin graduated from Harvard in 1989 with a degree in economics.[3]

Career[edit]

After graduating from Harvard, Frank C. Meyer, an investor and founder of Glenwood Capital LLC, provided Griffin with $1 million to invest.[15] Griffin exceeded Meyer's expectations and, according to The New York Times, Meyer made 70 percent return on the investment.[citation needed]

Citadel[edit]

Citadel was founded by Griffin in 1990 with $4.6 million.[16][17] By 1998, Citadel had grown to a team of more than 100 employees and $1 billion in investment capital.[17]

In June 2002, Griffin was included in CFO Magazine's Global 100, a list of the most influential people in the world of finance.[18]

After nearly twenty years in the industry, Griffin has appeared numerous times in Forbes' Forbes 400 as CEO of Citadel. His first appearance on the Forbes 400 was in 2003, with an estimated net worth of $650 million. At 34, he was the youngest self-made individual on the list.[19] In September 2004, Fortune magazine ranked Griffin, who was 35 that year, as the eighth richest American under forty in the category of self-made, United States-based wealth.[20] In 2006, Griffin was the fifth youngest of the seven members under the age of 40 listed on the Forbes 400.[21][22] In 2007, Griffin was had an estimated net worth of $3 billion.[23] By 2014, Griffin’s net worth was estimated at $5.5 billion.[24]

In March 2015, Citadel received a Top 10 Great Workplaces in Financial Services ranking by the Great Places to Work Institute, which was based on a survey taken by Citadel employees. Griffin was credited for implementing a collaborative work culture and providing perks to employees including free lunch, museum tours, fitness programs and personal gifts.[5][25]

Griffin was a featured panelist at the 2015 Milken Institute Global Conference where he spoke about Citadel, building complex organizations by investing in employees,[26][27] and corporate activism in which he said: "I’m all in favor of liberating access to the boardroom by activists and giving shareholders a greater role in how [the company is] managed. That benefit accrues to everyone in society."[28]

Views on market structure[edit]

Griffin has voiced his stance on issues on financial regulations and market structure throughout his years as a business executive and has testified at various government hearings.[29] Griffin provided testimony at a U.S. Senate Committee[30] hearing on "The Role of Regulation in Shaping Equity Market Structure and Electronic Trading", in which he reiterated the need to have industry regulations catch up with the changes in market structure to increase the fairness and resilience of American Equity markets.[29]

Griffin, along with NASDAQ Executive Vice President Thomas A. Whittman and Jeff Sprecher, founder and CEO of Intercontinental Exchange and the NYSE, has voiced concerns about regulation failing to keep pace with changes in market structure. An example of this is the permitted practice of dark pools discriminating against certain customer segments.[31]

In May 2008, he criticized the risk management practices of Wall Street saying: "As an industry, we have a responsibility to manage risk in a way that is prudent...The capital markets are controlled by a bunch of right-out-of business school young guys who haven't really seen that much. You have a real lack of wisdom."[32] Griffin has also stated: "We, as an industry, dropped the ball. The industry needs to overhaul its thinking, accept greater regulation."[33] He explained his views on regulation and risk in a 2008 New York Times article where he was quoted as saying "The unwillingness of the Federal Reserve and the S.E.C. to require working capital limits only exacerbates the risk-taking environment because the banks are playing the equivalent of no-limit poker."[32] Later in 2008, he testified to the United States House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, stating that "The rapid growth in the use of derivatives has created an opaque market whose outstanding notional value is measured in the hundreds of trillions of dollars. As a result, there is great concern about the systemic effects of the failure of any one financial institution."[34]

Activities[edit]

Board memberships[edit]

Griffin serves on the Committee on Capital Markets Regulation.[35] Griffin is also a member of the G100, a network of 100 CEOs that meets periodically to discuss the global economy.[36][37][38]

In 2014, Griffin was elected to a five-year term on the University of Chicago's Board of Trustees.[3] He is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art.[39] He is also a member of a number of organizations including the Economic Club of Chicago, and the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago.[40] Griffin serves as the vice chairman of the Chicago Public Education Fund.[41]

Philanthropy[edit]

Griffin has donated about $500 million to support various causes, including tens of millions to institutions in Chicago.[42]

In October 2006, the Griffins and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation funded and supported the opening of a new charter school in Chicago called Woodlawn High School.[43]

Griffin and his wife founded the Kenneth and Anne Griffin Foundation in October 2009. The foundation's contributions include $10 million for the Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center and $16 million to Children's Memorial Hospital, and funding the University of Chicago’s Early Childhood Center, and others.[11][44]

The Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center, located in Chicago Heights, is an experimental educational effort run by Dr. John A. List, a University of Chicago economics professor, designed to test whether investing in teachers, or alternatively, in parents, produces better student performance in school.[45]

Through the Citadel Group Foundation (CGF), Griffin has contributed to the Art Institute of Chicago,[11] public education,[44] the Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago,[46] the Chicago Public Library and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.[44] Griffin has made contributions to the Robin Hood Foundation.[2][47] He also has contributed to the Museum of Contemporary Art,[48][49] the "Evolving Planet" at the Field Museum of Natural History[50] and endowed professorships at the University of Chicago.[51]

In February 2014, Griffin gave $150 million to his alma mater, Harvard University largely for need-based undergraduate financial aid. At the time, it was the largest single gift in Harvard's history.[52][53][54]

In 2015, he donated $10 million to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago.[55][56]

Art collection[edit]

Griffin is known as one of the most active art buyers in the world and has devoted some of his time to the collection and patronage of art. He reportedly paid a record price of $60 million for Paul Cézanne's painting Curtain, Jug and Fruit Bowl in 1999.[57] In October 2006, Griffin purchased False Start by artist Jasper Johns for $80 million from Dreamworks co-founder David Geffen.[58] Griffin donated a $19 million addition to the Art Institute of Chicago that was designed by Renzo Piano.[59] The Paul Cézanne paintings have also been loaned to the Institute.[44]

Politics[edit]

In 2012, Griffin said in an interview with the Chicago Tribune that he was a Reagan Republican. He said that "This belief that a larger government is what creates prosperity, that a larger government is what creates good: is wrong."[60] After the 2007-08 financial crisis, Griffin made political contributions and donations to political candidates, parties, and organizations that supported his views of limited government such as American Crossroads, the Republican Governors Association, and Restore Our Future a Super PAC that supported Mitt Romney's presidential bid.[60][11] Mr. Griffin backed Mitt Romney's 2012 run for the presidency and has regularly donated to Eric Cantor, Republican of Virginia, and Senator Mark Kirk, Republican of Illinois. He donated $2.5 million to Bruce Rauner, a Republican candidate for Illinois governor.[61]

Personal life[edit]

Griffin married Anne Dias-Griffin, the founder of Aragon Global Management, another Chicago-based hedge fund firm, in July 2004.[62] They have three children.[62] In July 2014, Griffin filed for divorce from his wife in Cook County Circuit Court stating “irreconcilable differences.”[63]

Griffin is a member of the Fourth Presbyterian Church of Chicago. In 2011, Griffin donated $11 million of the $38.2 million needed to build a new chapel at the church. The modern building is called "The Gratz Center" in honor of Griffin's grandparents.[2]

In 2013 he acquired four prime real estate properties in Florida which cost a cumulated $130 mil.[64]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Delevingne, Lawrence (15 May 2015). "King Ken: Recovered Citadel chief takes the hedge fund throne". CNBC. Retrieved 20 May 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c Kent, Cheryl (December 19, 2012). "Fourth Presbyterian Church's new Gratz Center a welcome and brave grace note". Chicago Tribune. 
  3. ^ a b c d Allen, Susie; Huang, Wen (July 15, 2014). "Two new members elected to University of Chicago Board of Trustees". University of Chicago News. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  4. ^ "About Citadel's Leadership". Citadel. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  5. ^ a b Kapos, Shia (March 6, 2015). "Not the Ken Griffin story you were expecting". Crain's Chicago Business. Retrieved April 29, 2015. 
  6. ^ Bit, Kelly (October 7, 2014). "Griffin's Citadel Rose in September as Hedge Funds Fell". Bloomberg. Retrieved December 11, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Ken Griffin's Citadel sees huge surge in assets". CNBC. October 6, 2014. Retrieved February 18, 2015. 
  8. ^ Nathan Vardi (February 26, 2013). "The 40 Highest-Earning Hedge Fund Managers And Traders". Forbes. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  9. ^ Svea Herbst-Bayliss (February 19, 2014). "Hedge fund manager Griffin gives $150 million to Harvard". Reuters. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  10. ^ Melissa Harris (February 19, 2014). "Billionaire Chicagoan Ken Griffin donates $150 million to Harvard". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  11. ^ a b c d e f Meyer, Graham (June 8, 2011). "The File on Citadel's Ken Griffin". Chicago Magazine. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "Ken Griffin". Esquire. October 9, 2008. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  13. ^ Paul Milnes (April 21, 2014). "Ken Griffin – Wall Street's Boy Wonder". HedgeThink. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  14. ^ Sheelah Kolhatkar (April 16, 2007). "Opening Up the Citadel". Upstart Business Journal. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  15. ^ "Kenneth Griffin, The World's Richest People". Forbes.com. February 13, 2006. Retrieved August 13, 2012. 
  16. ^ Michael Barris (May 23, 2014). "US hedge fund raises money from wealthy Chinese to invest abroad". China Daily. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  17. ^ a b "Citadel Overview". Citadel. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  18. ^ Miles, Paul (April 21, 2014). "Ken Griffin – Wall Street’s Boy Wonder". Hedge Think. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  19. ^ "America's rich get richer". CNN. September 19, 2003. 
  20. ^ George Mannes (November 15, 2004). "Citadel Storms Into Google". TheStreet. Retrieved August 13, 2012. 
  21. ^ "The 400 Richest Americans". Forbes.com. September 21, 2006. Retrieved August 13, 2012. 
  22. ^ Paul Fruchbom (April 2, 2007). "Predicting the next big hedge fund IPO". Fortune. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  23. ^ "#117 Kenneth Griffin". Forbes.com. September 20, 2007. Retrieved August 13, 2012. 
  24. ^ "Ken Griffin profile". Forbes. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  25. ^ Yang, Stephanie (March 6, 2015). "Apparently people love working for Ken Griffin's hedge fund". Business Insider. Retrieved April 29, 2015. 
  26. ^ Melin, Mark (28 April 2015). "Ken Griffin: Not All Hedge Fund Managers Want To Build Large Organizations". Value Walk. Retrieved 13 May 2015. 
  27. ^ Cunningham, Aaron (28 April 2015). "Hedge fund managers say it's important to invest in people". Pensions&Investments. Retrieved 13 May 2015. 
  28. ^ Krantz, Matt (28 April 2015). "Activists rattle 19 big companies' cages". America's Markets. Retrieved 13 May 2015. 
  29. ^ a b "Testimony of Mr. Kenneth Griffin". United States Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, & Urban Affairs. July 8, 2014. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  30. ^ "Wall St trade group proposes reforms to U.S. equity market". Reuters. July 14, 2014. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  31. ^ Michaels, Dave; Hopkins, Cheyenne (July 8, 2014). "High-Speed Trading Risk Blamed on U.S. Market Regulations". Bloomberg. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  32. ^ a b Sorkin, Andrew (May 2008). "A Wish List for Fixing Wall Street". New York Times. 
  33. ^ Opalesque (May 13, 2008). "Kenneth Griffin states industry needs to overhaul its thinking". 
  34. ^ Jenny Strasburg (November 14, 2008). "Capitol Hill Questions Hedge-Fund Managers". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  35. ^ Staff (September 12, 2006). "New Independent Non-Partisan Committee to Study Capital Markets Regulation and Make Recommendations to Key Policy Makers" (Press release). New York City: PR Newswire. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  36. ^ http://g100.com/pdf/g100_brochure.pdf
  37. ^ "About G100". G100. Retrieved December 18, 2014. 
  38. ^ "G100 Network Notebook". SSA. March 2012. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  39. ^ "Board of Trustees". Whitney Museum of American Art. Retrieved April 29, 2015. 
  40. ^ "Kenneth C. Griffin". The Chicago Public Education Fund. Retrieved December 18, 2014. 
  41. ^ John Lauerman (February 20, 2014). "Citadel's Griffin Gives Harvard $150 Million for Student Aid". Bloomberg. Retrieved December 18, 2014. 
  42. ^ "Who are Ken and Anne Dias Griffin?". Chicago Tribune. November 7, 2014. Retrieved December 18, 2014. 
  43. ^ William Harms. "Woodlawn, University partners in education through Charter School". The University of Chicago Chronicle. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  44. ^ a b c d Robert Reed (June 29, 2007). "Hedge Fun". Chicago Magazine. Retrieved December 18, 2014. 
  45. ^ Staley, Oliver (February 23, 2011). "Chicago Economists Crazy Idea for Education Wins Ken Griffin's Backing". Bloomberg. 
  46. ^ Harris, Melissa; Japsen, Bruce (January 7, 2010). "Kenneth and Anne Griffin give $16 million to Children's Memorial Hospital". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved December 18, 2014. 
  47. ^ Matthew Miller (September 18, 2003). "From The Rich To The Poor". Forbes. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  48. ^ Ochs, Alyssa (September 25, 2013). fund-to-the-gallery-kenneth-griffins-love-aff.html "From the Hedge Fund to the Gallery: Kenneth Griffin’s Love Affair with Art". Inside Philanthropy. Retrieved February 17, 2015. 
  49. ^ "Rudolf Stingel". Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. Retrieved February 17, 2015. 
  50. ^ "Evolving Planet Educator Guide" (PDF). The Field Museum. August 7, 2014. Retrieved February 17, 2015. 
  51. ^ "Anne and Kenneth Griffin Provide $10 Million Multi-Year Study on School Improvement". University of Chicago. October 8, 2009. Retrieved February 17, 2015. 
  52. ^ Staff (February 19, 2014). "Kenneth Griffin makes largest gift in Harvard College history". Harvard Gazette. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  53. ^ Belkin, Douglas; Copeland, Rob (February 20, 2014). "Fund Chief Is Harvard's No. 1 Donor". The Wall Street Journal. pp. C1–C2. 
  54. ^ De La Merced, Michael J. (February 19, 2014). "Founder of Citadel Pledges $150 Million to Harvard, Its Largest Gift Ever". New York Times. Retrieved 30 November 2014. 
  55. ^ "MCA gets $10 million from Ken Griffin". Crain's Chicago Business. February 20, 2015. Retrieved March 11, 2015. 
  56. ^ Kazakina, Katya (February 20, 2015). "Citadel's Griffin Gives $10 Million to Chicago Art Museum". Bloomberg Business. Retrieved April 29, 2015. 
  57. ^ "Hedge Fund Dough Pushes Up Art Prices: WSJ". Artnet. May 19, 2005. Retrieved January 25, 2015. 
  58. ^ Vogel, Carol (October 12, 2006). "Works by Johns and de Kooning Sell for $143.5 Million". The New York Times. 
  59. ^ "Citadel's Griffin at the Art World’s Gates". New York Times DealBook. July 26, 2007. Retrieved February 17, 2015. 
  60. ^ a b Melissa Harris (March 11, 2012). "Ken Griffin interview: Billionaire talks politics and money". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved December 18, 2014. 
  61. ^ [ A Divorce That Thrusts Ken Griffin and Anne Dias Griffin Into the Spotlight] by Michael J. de la Merced and Alexandra Stevenson on July 24, 2014 (The New York Times)
  62. ^ a b De La Merced, Michael J.; Stevenson, Alexandra (July 24, 2014). "A Divorce That Thrusts Ken Griffin and Anne Dias Griffin Into the Spotlight". Retrieved April 30, 2015. 
  63. ^ Shia Kapos (July 24, 2014). "Ken Griffin says prenup is 'valid, binding, enforceable'". Chicago Business. Retrieved April 30, 2015. 
  64. ^ "Citadel's Kenneth Griffin Buys Four Properties in Palm Beach for $130 Million", The Wall Street Journal [online], February 14 2013. Accessed 18 June 2015.

Further reading[edit]

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