One of Wall Street’s wealthiest and most influential investors is Carl Icahn. He is among the richest persons in America, with a net worth estimated at $17.7 billion. He has been responsible for many significant stock market and company takeover victories.
He has developed a reputation for using aggressive strategies and making significant bets on risky investments. Stocks in some of the giant corporations in the world, including Apple, Herbalife, and PayPal, are currently part of his portfolio. His extensive track record of accomplishment clearly indicates his aptitude as a thinker and investor.
What is Carl Icahn’s Net Worth?
American entrepreneur, investor, and activist shareholder Carl Icahn has a $24 billion net worth. Carl Icahn is well known as the creator and principal stakeholder of the holding corporation Icahn Enterprises in New York City.
His investment approach, which has become commonplace for hedge funds, entails purchasing substantial business holdings, which he then exerts pressure on to modify corporate policies in shareholders’ best interests.
Since then, Icahn has attempted several other mercenary takeovers and asset strips. In the 1980s, when he benefited from the hostile takeover of Trans World Airlines, Icahn was accused of being a “corporate raider” and called out for it.
Early Life and Education
On February 16, 1936, Bella, a schoolteacher, gave birth to Carl Icahn in the Brooklyn neighborhood of New York City. Michael, a cantor and later a substitute teacher, was also present at the birth. Icahn, who was raised in Queens, attended Far Rockaway High School.
He continued his education at Princeton University, earning an A.B. in philosophy in 1957. Icahn then enrolled at the School of Medicine at New York University but left after two years to join the military reserve.
Career Beginnings in Business
Icahn started the business world in 1961 when he joined the Dreyfus Corporation as a stockbroker. A few years later, he began working at Gruntal & Co. after serving as an options manager for Tessel, Patrick & Co. Icahn invested $400,000 from his uncle and his resources of $150,000 to buy a seat on the New York Stock Exchange in 1968.
Later, he established Icahn & Co., a firm specializing in risk arbitrage and options trading. When Icahn acquired a controlling interest in the appliance manufacturer Tappan in 1978, he forcibly sold the business to Electrolux, doubling his initial investment.
He acquired Bayswater Realty & Capital Corporation the following year. Icahn bought AFC Industries in the early 1980s, and he profited $50 million when he sold his shares to Phillips Petroleum in 1985.
Trans World Airlines Controversy
When Icahn combined his funds with borrowed and investor funds in the middle to late 1980s to buy 50% of Trans World Airlines before completing a leveraged buyout to acquire the firm outright, he sparked much controversy.
Then, to pay off his obligations, he sold the company’s assets, leading some to refer to him as a “corporate raider” who was asset-stripping. Icahn later made a profit by selling American Airlines the rights to TWA’s London services for $445 million, leaving TWA in debt of $540 million.
Further Business Career
In his mercenary business dealings, Icahn has been active in addition to the TWA fiasco. He made an $8 billion unsuccessful bid to take over U.S. Steel in 1986. Five years later, when he sold his investment for $1 billion, he earned a profit of $200 million. Icahn also made a sizable profit from the 1989 sale of his Texaco stock. Later, in 1997, he acquired control of Marvel Comics and made money by selling his 7.3% stake in RJR Nabisco.
Icahn began raising $3 billion in 2004 to launch his hedge fund, Icahn Partners, and he also purchased shares of Time Warner and Blockbuster Video. He also purchased stock in several other businesses, including Take-Two Interactive, Telik, Motricity, BEA Systems, Biogen, Yahoo!, Lawson Software, Mentor Graphics, Netflix, Nuance Communications, Hologic, Lyft, and many others. In 2011, he also failed to take over Lionsgate Films. Icahn has also made a sizable investment in Apple.
Donald Trump received Icahn’s support in the 2016 presidential race and disclosed the formation of a super PAC with a $150 million commitment to support corporate tax inversions. Icahn was appointed Special Advisor to the President on Regulatory Reform after the election, a role he held until August 2017. Icahn sold his investments in steel-price-sensitive stock the following year, only days before the Trump administration tariffed steel imports, saving him millions of dollars in losses.
Despite his cutthroat, frequently unethical business activities, Icahn has also participated in charitable endeavors. He has contributed to Princeton University, which established a genomics lab in his honor, and Mount Sinai Hospital in New York.
He also founded a charity called the Children’s Rescue Fund, which runs two more homeless shelters, and built a 65-unit complex in the Bronx for pregnant and unmarried homeless women with children. The Icahn Scholar Program at Choate Rosemary Hall, Icahn Stadium, and the Carl C. Icahn Center for Science are all named in his honor.
Icahn first met Liba Trejbal, a Czech ballerina, in 1978. When she fell pregnant eight months later, he proposed marriage to her because she accepted a prenuptial agreement.
They had two kids, Brett and Michelle, after marriage in 1979. Later, in 1993, Trejbal sought a divorce and filed a lawsuit to have the prenuptial agreement declared void because she was coerced into signing it. In 1999, the couple ultimately got a divorce. Icahn later wed Gail Golden, his longtime aide, and welcomed two stepchildren into the family.
Icahn is a devoted follower of thoroughbred racing. He founded the equine breeding business Foxfield Thoroughbreds in 1985. His horse Meadow Star won the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies five years later. He transitioned into commercial breeding in 1992. In 2004, Icahn closed Foxfield and sold all his mares and weanlings.
Pros and Cons Carl Icahn’s Net Worth
- Carl Icahn’s success in the stock market and corporate takeovers, his aggressive attitude to investing, have seen him reap enormous gains, and his portfolio, including some of the world’s biggest firms, all contribute to his wealth.
- Carl Icahn’s reputation as being challenging to deal with, his prior involvement in contentious takeovers, and some of his failed investments all contribute to his wealth. He is still regarded as one of Wall Street’s most influential investors and a role model for aspiring business moguls.
Final Thought – Carl Icahn Net Worth
In conclusion, Carl Icahn’s wealth is evidence of his sharp business sense and remarkable investing abilities. He has amassed billions of dollars and cemented his place among the world’s wealthiest people thanks to his aggressive attitude and diverse portfolio of investments. He still exerts significant influence in the banking sector and is an example for aspiring business moguls worldwide.