Wes Edens, Chairman and Founder of Fortress Investment Group

Born in October 1961, Wesley Robert Edens is a successful American businessman, private equity investor, and a Bucks team owner. He received his B.S in Finance and administration from Oregon State University in 1984.He started his career in 1987 at Lehman Brothers as an MD untill 1993. He later proceeded to BlacRock’s private equity division working as a managing director and a partner.It was at BlackRock that he created his first private equity fund that was referred to as BlackRock Asset Investors.In 1998, together with Robert Kauffman, Peter Briger, Randal Nardone and Michael Edward, he founded Fortress Investments Group.Wes Edens, who runs Fortress’s private equity business was the influence at Fortress’s purchase of subprime lender Springleaf Financial Services which was then known as American General Finance.

This made Fortress the Springleaf’s majority stakeholder. By 2015, the value of Springleaf had drastically increased to $3.5 billion gain, this value was 27 times more Fortress’s initial investment of just $400 million in 1998.In 2018, Wes Edens sold the Fortress Investment group to SoftBank, a Japanese Corporation. It was sold at $3.3 billion. Nevertheless, he retains his leadership role in the New York based business in a five year deal.He is a great Philanthropist who has donated over $2.8 million to charity. He has donated to many academic institutions, health centres and nonprofit organizations.Macalester College and Martha’s Vineyard Hospital are the top beneficiaries of his philanthropy work

His private equity management experience and astounding knowledge in the business field makes him an highly sought after director. In 2014, together with Lasry Marc, he bought the Bucks team from Herb Kohl for $550 million. He promised to keep the team in Wisconsin and build them a new arena to replace the BMO Harris Center. The Bucks basketball team is currently valued at $1.1 billion.Wes Edens is a high earning private Executive. His annual “take-home” pay is open to debate but he takes home a cool annual $54.4million. This includes his annual total compensation at Fortress Investment group and dividends received as a shareholder.Wes Edens and his wife Lynn Edens have 4 children. His hobbies include horse jumping and mountain climbing. He has scaled the heights of Mt. Kilimanjaro and the Matterhorn Grand Teton. In his youth, he was a competitive ski racer and now he is a trustee of Ski and Snowboard Foundation team in the U.S.A.

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