Manuel Moroun

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Manuel Moroun
Born (1927-06-05) June 5, 1927 (age 89)
Detroit, Michigan, United States
Nationality American
Other names Matty Moroun
Alma mater University of Notre Dame
Occupation Chairman and CEO of CenTra Inc.
Known for Owner of the Ambassador Bridge and Michigan Central Station
Net worth US $ 2.0 billion (Sept 2015)[1]
Spouse(s) Nora[2]
Children Matthew Moroun

Manuel Moroun (born June 5, 1927) is an American businessman in the Detroit, Michigan, area and the owner of CenTra, Inc., the holding company which controls the Ambassador Bridge, the international crossing connecting Detroit, Michigan and Windsor, Ontario.[3][4] This is the only private ownership of a border crossing between the US and Canada. Moroun bought the bridge from the Bower Family in 1979.

The bridge is now estimated to be worth between $1.5 and 3 billion.[5] CenTra, Inc., is also the controlling body of Central Transport International, an LTL trucking carrier.[6] Moroun also has a controlling stake in Universal Truckload Services Inc., which is a holding company for several over-the-road truck lines and logistics companies (Universal Am-Can Ltd., Mason Dixon Lines, Economy Transport, Cavalry Logistics, Louisiana Transportation, Inc. etc.) Moroun is also the owner of the derelict Michigan Central Station for railroad passenger traffic[7] and the Roosevelt Warehouse.[8] A recent Forbes article listed him as the 321st richest American.[9]

Early life[edit]

Manuel Moroun is of Lebanese descent.[10] He grew up on Detroit's east side with three sisters. His father ran two gas stations in Detroit, where Matty worked before and during high school. Moroun attended the University of Detroit Jesuit High School, graduating in 1945.[citation needed]

In 1946, his father bought Central Cartage Company, which would later become Central Transport, and Moroun started working with him. During college, Matty regularly commuted between the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana, and Detroit to help run the family business.[11]

Bridge ownership[edit]

Moroun bought the Ambassador Bridge in 1979 when shares came on the market. It was originally privately built by railroad interests.

In 2009, the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) sued Moroun and the Detroit International Bridge Company for failing to comply with the terms of a contract to construct ramps connecting the Ambassador Bridge to nearby expressways as part of the Gateway Project. Wayne County Circuit Judge Prentis Edwards ruled in February 2010 that Moroun and the chief deputy of the Detroit International Bridge Co., Dan Stamper, were in violation of the contract and ordered them to become in compliance. On 12 January 2012, Judge Edwards found both Moroun and Stamper to be in non-compliance with his previous order and ordered both men to jail, denying a motion to stay the order until it could be appealed to the Michigan Court of Appeals.[12][13] After spending a night in jail, both men were released by the appellate court while they heard the case.[14]

The US and Canadian governments have agreed to build the Gordie Howe International Bridge, a bridge between Detroit and Windsor to be located downriver. On 25 March 2010, Moroun announced a suit to try to block construction of the new bridge, as it would compete with his own proposal to build a second span of the Ambassador Bridge, which he would own.[15] Critics suggest that Moroun's opposition is fueled by the prospect of lost profits from duty-free gasoline sales at the bridge.

Ed Arditti, of the online news site Windsor Square suggested the appointment of Mark R. McQueen to the new Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority was intended to anger the Moroun family.[16] McQueen had been the executive assistant to Hugh Segal, Brian Mulroney's chief of staff, when the Mulroney administration had a dispute with Moroun.


  1. ^ "Manuel Moroun & family". 1970-01-01. Retrieved 2016-01-17. 
  2. ^ [1][dead link]
  3. ^ "Crain's Detroit Business : Subscription Center". Retrieved 2016-01-17. 
  4. ^ Archived from the original on 6 February 2010. Retrieved 30 August 2009.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ [2][dead link]
  6. ^ "Central Transport". Retrieved 2016-01-17. 
  7. ^ "Transportation & Logistics Solutions | Universal Truckload Services, Inc. | UTSI". Retrieved 2016-01-17. 
  8. ^ Aguilar, Louis. "Morouns tidy up before Detroit land vote". The Detroit News. Retrieved 13 January 2017. 
  9. ^ "The 400 Richest Americans: #321 Manuel Moroun". Retrieved 2016-01-17. 
  10. ^ "Ammonnews". 
  11. ^ Voyles, S. "The Man Behind the Bridge - Matty Moroun". Corp!. Retrieved 27 August 2012. 
  12. ^ "Mich. billionaire, 84, jailed over bridge dispute". 2010-02-01. Retrieved 2016-01-17. 
  13. ^ "Billionaire Bridge Owner's Greed Lands Him In Jail". 2011-01-21. Retrieved 2016-01-17. 
  14. ^ "Billionaire Detroit bridge owner released from jail". Reuters. 2012-01-14. Retrieved 2016-01-17. 
  15. ^ Archived from the original on 27 March 2010. Retrieved 26 March 2010.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  16. ^ Ed Arditti. "The Real Reason Behind The DRIC Boards Announcement". Windsor Square. Someone has quite a sense of humour within the Canadian Bureaucracy to make him Chair and a possible competitor with the Ambassador Bridge Company.