Victor Smorgon

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Victor Smorgon
AC
Born (1913-01-02)2 January 1913
Heidelberg
Died 3 July 2009(2009-07-03) (aged 96)
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Nationality Australian
Occupation Businessman
Known for Co-founder of Smorgon Consolidated Industries
Officer of the Order of Australia
Spouse(s) Lotti Smorgon
Children Sandra Smorgon Bardas
Ginny Smorgon Green
Vicki Smorgon Vidor
Bindy Smorgon Koadlow
Parent(s) Naum Smorgon (father)

Victor Smorgon AC (2 January 1913 – 3 July 2009) was an Australian industrialist, arts patron and benefactor, who was founder and former head of the Victor Smorgon Group.

Biography[edit]

Smorgon was born in 1913 in Heidelberg, a German settlement in Ukraine, then part of the Russian Empire.[1] His father, Naum (Norman) Smorgon, ran a kosher butcher shop until the business was nationalized in 1927, with the Smorgon family emigrating to Australia later that year. Naum Smorgon and his brothers resumed the family's kosher butchery in the Melbourne suburb of Carlton North, and Victor entered the wholesale meat business.[2] The success of Victor's meat importing business saw the entire family become involved in the company, and soon Smorgon Consolidated Industries expanded its business to cover plastics, glass, steel and recycling.[3]

By 1995, the collective worth of Smorgon Consolidated Industries' interests in steel, paper, plastics, packaging and property had been estimated at between A$1.2 billion and $1.5 billion. In February of that year, the Smorgon family decided to divest the company (with the exception of the Smorgon Steel Group, Australia's second-largest steel producer, which was floated publicly). The proceeds of the SCI sale were distributed among the seven branches of the Smorgon family in Australia, and re-invested or used to purchase new holdings under the umbrella of the Victor Smorgon Group.[4]

Personal life[edit]

In 1937, he married Lotti Smorgon in the East Melbourne Synagogue; they had four daughters:[5] Sandra Smorgon Bardas, Ginny Smorgon Green, Vicki Smorgon Vidor and Bindy Smorgon Koadlow.[6] Smorgon died in Melbourne, Australia on 3 July 2009 aged 96.[7]

Honours[edit]

Victor Smorgon was appinted an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 1990 for service to art as a benefactor.[8] Smorgon was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) in 2007 for service to the community as a benefactor and supporter of a wide range of organisations, particularly in the areas of art, education and medicine.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Victor Smorgon - Full Interview Transcript, Australian Biography (Film Australia), 1998.
  2. ^ Creswell, Toby; Samantha Trenoweth (2006). 1001 Australians You Should Know. Melbourne: Pluto Press Australia. ISBN 1-86403-361-4. 
  3. ^ Victor Smorgon dead at the age of 96, Yahoo! News, 3 July 2009.
  4. ^ Elias, David: The Smorgon Empire, The Age, 16 January 1999.
  5. ^ The Age: "Loti Smorgon dies after lifetime of philanthropy" by Adrian Lowe August 21, 2013
  6. ^ The Fouress Foundation: "Giving Green Stories - Elli and Belinda Bardas, Family Foundation Working Group Members" retrieved May 28, 2015
  7. ^ Hedge, Mike (3 July 2009). "Industrialist Victor Smorgon dies at 96". The Age. Retrieved 1 December 2009. 
  8. ^ "SMORGON, Victor: Officer of the Order of Australia". It's an Honour. Australian Government. June 1990. 
  9. ^ "MORGON, Victor: Companion of the Order of Australia". It's an Honour. Australian Government. June 2007.