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Soros Fund Management
12 Aug 1930
Estimated Net Worth
At least $19.9 billion
Southampton, New York, United States New York, New York, United States Bedford, New York, United States
Budapest, Budapest, Hungary
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Hedge fund manager and philanthropist George Soros was born "Gyorgy Schwartz" in Budapest, Hungary to a non-observant Jewish family. In 1936, the family changed its name to Soros due to increasing anti-Semitism. He appears to have officially changed his name to George Soros. Soros migrated to England in 1947, and earned a Bachelor's degree from the London School of Economics in 1952. Moved to New York City, New York in 1956 and worked as an Arbitrage Trader at F. M. Mayer. In 1959, was hired as a Financial Analyst at Wertheim & Company. Joined Arnold & S. Bleichroeder in 1963 and rose to Vice-President. In 1967, the firm created offshore investment fund First Eagle Funds for Soros to manage. In 1969, Soros founded Soros Fund Management, which currently operates all of his future hedge funds. In 1973, left First Eagle Funds and started his own hedge fund, which became known as Quantum Fund, a part of Soros Fund Management. It dealt in international investments in public and private equity, fixed income markets, foreign exchange, commodities, and venture capital funds. It has averaged a 20% annual return and created over $30 billion in profits since its inception, making it one of the most successful hedge funds ever. When Soros retired in 2011, Soros Fund Management converted into a family office and ceased managing outside money, which comprised less than $1 billion of its $26 billion of assets. Since 1979, Soros has donated large sums to charitable causes. Soros is married to Tamiko Bolton. The couple appears to reside in New York.
London School of Economics and Political Science
London School of Economics and Political Science
In May 2016, a set of confidential documents leaked from Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca dubbed as "Panama Papers," accused Soros of establishing offshore investment vehicles Soros Finance, Soros Holdings and Soros Capital to evade taxes.
In March 2014, Soros reportedly invested more than $120 million in Spanish investment vehicle Hispania Activos Inmobiliarios, which was created by Madrid, Spain-based private investment firm Azora.
In May 2013, Soros reportedly short sold $1 billion worth of Australian currency with three different brokers each, which earned him $60 million in profits.
Reportedly made more than $1 billion in 1992 short-selling the British pound.
Even though Soros has made a large amount of donations around the world, public opinion of him remains somewhat hostile. He is remembered by some as a selfish person who crushed national monetary systems to boost his own wealth. Soros has been known as "The Man Who Broke the Bank of England." In Thailand, Soros is considered the cause of the 1997 Asian financial crisis.
On 18 April 2013, Reuters prematurely announced Soros' obituary on its online news website which was removed within half an hour, after the mistake was identified. A spokesman for Soros reportedly confirmed that he is "alive and well." Reuters apologized for the error.
Soros was profoundly impacted by Karl Popper, a Viennese-born philosopher, while studying at the London School of Economics; Popper's book The Open Society and Its Enemies led to Soros' theory of reflexivity, which he developed during his trading days. Soros named his Open Society Foundations after the book.
Founded Central European University (CEU) in Budapest in 1991, and pledged an additional $200 million to the institution in 2005, as well as $23 million to CEU's business school. Accredited in Hungary and the U.S., CEU graduates receive both Hungarian and American degrees. On the occasion of the 2005 gift, Soros said, "CEU has a unique dual identity and can serve as a bridge across many divides. The increase in its endowment provides CEU with the resources and stability it needs to continue to grow into a world-class research and teaching institution aligned with a mission of promoting open societies."
Since 1994, Soros reportedly contributed at least $80 million to marijuana legalization efforts in the U.S. His donations towards legalizing marijuana were not direct and instead made through a connection of non-profits that organized movements to legalize the drug. The movements, which looked mostly public-funded, were actually backed by billionaires like Soros.
His family changed its name from Schwartz to Soros in response to growing anti-Semitism along with the rise of fascism. In Hungarian, Soros means "next in line," or "designated successor;" and in Hebrew, "foundation." Soros' father, Tivadar, paid an employee at the Ministry of Agriculture, Baumbach, to let Soros live with him in Budapest and pretend he was his godson to avoid Nazi deportation; went under the Romanian name "Sandor Kiss." Soros' real name was Gyorgy Schwartz. He appears to have officially changed his name to George Soros.
In 2011, Soros and Michael Rubens Bloomberg, reportedly pledged to donate $60 million over three years, through their private foundations, to improve educational and economic prospects for New York's young black and Latino men.
In January 2015, it was reported that Soros funded $33 million into the protests that occurred in 2014 after an 18-year-old African-American boy was shot dead by a former police officer in Ferguson, Missouri. The report stated that Soros injected the money into the protests so it would have staying power in the headlines and he also sent organizers and professional groups to cover the unrest.
In June 2014, Soros Fund Management reportedly increased its stake to 9.53% in Radnor, Pennsylvania-based energy company Penn Virginia Corporation and also insisted that the company put itself for sale. In a letter to Penn Virginia Corporation, it stated, "We believe there are numerous potential acquirers who would be interested in acquiring the company at a material premium to its current trading price, as demonstrated by any number of precedent transactions in the industry." During the fourth quarter of 2014, the firm had also increased its stake in American automobile company General Motors by nearly 729,000 shares, totaling to 4.9 million shares.
In the last quarter of 2014, Soros Fund Management reportedly reduced its stake in the Rio de Janeiro, Brazil-based multinational energy company Petrobras by more than 50% following the company's investigations regarding alleged bribery schemes. The hedge fund reportedly also sold its entire stake in Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer and in Brazilian telecommunications company Tim Participacoes, a subsidiary of Telecom Italia.
Soros reportedly attended the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting at Davos, Switzerland in 2012 and 2013.
In 2010, Soros warned during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland that gold was overvalued, "When interest rates are low we have conditions for asset bubbles to develop, and they are developing at the moment. The ultimate asset bubble is gold." At the time, the price of gold was approximately $1,225 an ounce.
In the third quarter of 2012, Soros Fund Management greatly increased its holdings in gold. SEC filings show Soros Fund Management's shareholding in SPDR Gold Trust went up 49% during the three-month period, owning 1.32 million shares as of November, 2012. The stake represented a holding of more than 4 tons of gold valued at more than $221.4 million at the time. The price of gold reached $1,921.15 an ounce in September, 2012, which was about 60% higher than when Soros famously called gold the "Ultimate Asset Bubble" in 2010. Paulson & Company, another famous hedge fund, has also invested heavily in gold. However, the idea of betting on gold was not universally welcomed and some analysts warned ordinary investors should not blindly follow Soros' move.
Soros planned his September 2013 marriage to then 41-year-old girlfriend Tamiko Bolton, in a color-coordinated three day wedding. Around 1,000 invitations were printed in July 2013, of which only several hundred were sent to family and friends.
In September 2014, Open Society Foundations reportedly funded around $4 million for a project organized by Paul Farmer, Co-Founder of the non-profit organization Partners in Health, to open a treatment facility in one of Liberia's most rural provinces, where there were outbreaks of the Ebola virus.
Soros Fund Management reportedly exited J.C. Penney, the Texas-based departmental store chain, by selling more than 19 million shares during the final three months of 2013. It also cut its stake in Herbalife, an American nutritional weight loss and supplement product retailer, from 5 million shares to 3.2 million shares.
In May 2013, Soros reportedly invested $78.58 million in fiber-based Internet service provider, Hyperoptic.
In November 2014, Soros Fund Management reportedly agreed to acquire a 25% stake in Barcelona, Spain-based construction company Fomento de Construcciones y Contratas (FCC) from the company's Chairman and major shareholder Esther Koplowitz. Soros was reported to have spent around $808 million on the shares and rights in the capital increase.
Interests, Passion, Hobbies
High-profile philanthropist has donated more than $8 billion to charitable causes around the world.
Finance - Investment
Well-known hedge fund manager.
Soros is an avid art collector. Was examining the Hamptons 2005 art show and was impressed by Domingo Zapata's art works; bought one of his Polo Series works.
Has written 14 non-fiction books.
Generous political donor. As of 2015, Soros has donated about $7 million to Priorities USA Action, an American independent political action committee supporting Hillary Clinton for the 2016 U.S Presidential election.
Supports human rights and has a liberal ideology. Supported the anti-communism revolutions in Eastern Europe, including the one in Hungary. Soros organized a fundraiser at his Florida home to support the Innocence Project, a public policy organization to release wrongfully convicted individuals and to reform the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice.
Business - Management
Chairman of Soros Fund Management.
Interested in philosophy with many ideas borrowed from philosopher Karl Popper. Before graduating from the London School of Economics with a degree in Philosophy in 1952, Soros studied Karl Popper's work in the philosophy of science.
Interested in economics and other social issues.
Founder and Chairman of The Open Society Foundations, an organization which operates as the parent entity of various private foundations and philanthropic offices including Foundation to Promote Open Society, Open Society Institute, Open Society Fund and Iris Foundation. Soros is Chair Director at the Foundation to Promote Open Society. In 2013, the foundation had more than $3.3 billion in assets and donated more than $390 million; gives primarily to international givings, community development, social and human services, health and education causes. Notable recipients include Namati, Millennium Promise Alliance, New York Community Trust and Media Development Investment Fund. Soros also serves as Trustee Chair at the Open Society Institute. In 2013, the foundation had more than $1.5 billion in assets and donated more than $250 million; gives primarily to social and human services, community development, and educational causes. Soros is also Founder and Director of the Soros Fund Charitable Foundation. In 2013, the foundation had assets exceeding $280 million and donated more than $8 million. The foundation gives primarily to educational, environmental, and religion causes. Since 1979, Soros has given $8 billion to human rights, education and public health groups. Supports diverse causes including clean-needle clinics in California and scientific research in Russia to helping the Roma or Gypsies in Eastern Europe. Soros reportedly gave $30 million to help black and Hispanic youth of New York City, New York. Through his Open Society Foundations, he has contributed $1.7 billion to human rights causes and to help promote democracy. Also appears to have donated $1.6 billion towards education. In 2010, Soros personally donated $100 million to Human Rights Watch and $60 million to Bard College. He reportedly supported the legalization of marijuana in order to promote open society in the U.S. by donating more than $80 million through his foundation since 1994; donated around $4 million annually through the Drug Policy Alliance, a non-profit organization which fights to end drug wars in the U.S. He has also donated to the American Civil Liberties Union and the Marijuana Policy Project, which supported marijuana legalization. In January 2016, Soros pledged to donate $2 million to the University of Connecticut to support its Human Rights Institute.
Yoga instructor and entrepreneur. Is a graduate of the University of Utah and has an MBA from the University of Miami. Runs an on-line yoga courses provider. Was previously married in the 1990s. Bolton met Soros in 2008, and married in September 2013.
He was a Hungarian lawyer. Passed away in 1968.
Second wife; divorced in 2005. Was paid $24 million in the divorce settlement.
Brazilian soap opera actress who dated Soros between 2005 and 2010.
Andrea E. Soros Colombel
Listed her home in Greenwich Village, New York for sale at a reported $24.5 million in 2014. Unclear if the property was sold.
Gregory James Soros
Son with Susan Soros. Listed his home in Manhattan, New York for sale at a reported $12 million in 2013. Unclear if the house was sold.
Soros' first wife, divorced in 1983.
Robert Daniel Soros
Serves as a Director of the Soros Economic Development Fund.
Jonathan Allan Soros
Reportedly sold a town house in the West Village, New York, for $5.25 million in 2006. Media said that Jonathan Soros has stepped down from his management position in Soros Fund Management and was planning to open his own family office.
Alexander G. Soros
Earned his Bachelor's degree from New York University. Pursued his Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley. Is the Founder of the Alexander Soros Foundation.
Registered Democrat supports Democratic groups like the Majority Political Action Committee (PAC), which protects and expands the Democratic majority in the U.S. Senate; House Majority Political Action Committee (PAC), a super political action committee dedicated to electing Democrats to the House of Representatives, Priorities USA Action; and American Bridge 21st Century, a progressive research and communications organization committed to holding Republicans accountable for their words and actions. According to reports, Soros' lifetime giving exceeds $20 million. Reportedly gave around $1.3 million for various election campaigns in general. Soros reportedly contributed more than $27 million to various organizations which opposed President Bush's re-election in 2004. In 2005, Soros co-founded the Democracy Alliance, an invitation-only private membership network of major progressive and Democratic donors. In December 2013, Soros donated around $25,000 to Arlington, Virginia-based super-political action committee Ready for Hillary to encourage the former U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, to contest for the 2016 presidential elections. In March 2015, Soros reportedly contributed more than $9 million to U.S.-based non-profit organization State Innovation Exchange (SIX) to create a network that will dispense funds to grassroots liberal campaigns. In October 2015, he donated $250,000 to the Louisiana Safety & Justice PAC, a super PAC benefiting retired appellate judge James E. Stewart, who was vying for the role of District Attorney of Caddo, Oklahoma.