Hedge fund tycoon Ken Griffin builds up Florida property holdings

Business | 11 Sep 2019 4:01 pm

Hedge fund titan, Ken Griffin’s splurge on luxury real estate shows no signs of abating.

He spent US$99.1 million for a beachfront house adjacent to his existing Palm Beach, Florida, estate, according to the Palm Beach Post, citing sources with knowledge of the transaction and a deed filing, Bloomberg reports.

A Palm Beach County document confirmed the purchase price, but didn’t identify the buyer. A spokesman for Griffin didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

The Citadel founder set a U.S. record this year with the purchase of a US$238 million penthouse at 220 Central Park South. That came days after Griffin paid about US$122 million for a 200-year-old mansion overlooking London’s St. James’s Park about a half mile from Buckingham Palace. The 20,000-square-foot building includes a gym, pool and underground extension.

“His real estate purchases are clearly the gems of the markets he’s bought into,” said Jay Phillip Parker, chief executive officer of the Florida division of Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

The Palm Beach home, at 60 Blossom Way, is just north of a 17-acre oceanfront estate Griffin currently owns, the Post reported Monday.

His new eight-bedroom house, on almost 3.6 acres, was built in 2000 and last sold in 2017 for US$77.1 million, according to the website of Palm Beach County Appraiser Dorothy Jacks.

Palm Beach has morphed from a storied second-home location to a place that high-net-worth individuals now make their primary residence, Parker said. And that, in turn, has bolstered the cachet of the area, bringing with it luxury services and retailers that some of those new denizens desire. Big-ticket condo towers, such as the Bristol, are now springing up in the county, and US$20 million purchases are common enough that they’re almost routine, said Parker, who wasn’t involved in Griffin’s purchase.

Griffin has now spent at least US$350 million to build his Florida holdings, the Palm Beach Post reported. The cost of his major property purchases total more than US$700 million, according to calculations by Bloomberg.

Griffin, 50, started trading convertible bonds from his dorm room at Harvard University. The Florida native founded Citadel in 1990 and has expanded it into a global empire managing hedge funds and making markets.

He has amassed a US$9.9 billion fortune, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, a ranking of the world’s 500 wealthiest people. His net worth has increased by US$1.1 billion this year on the index.-Photo: The Real Deal

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