5 Things You Might Not Have Known About Billionaire Eddie Lampert


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Eddie Lampert is a hedge fund legend. Here are five things about the legendary investor you might not have known.

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5 Things You Might Not Have Known About Billionaire Eddie Lampert

  1. 1. 5 Things You Might Not Have Known About Billionaire Eddie Lampert
  2. 2. Lampert is the quintessential value investor In true value-investor fashion, Lampert’s investing style involves buying shares of undervalued companies and holding them for years, sometimes decades. Lampert’s fund isn’t known for trading in derivatives, or for shorting stocks. Source: Arivumathi, via Wikimedia Commons
  3. 3. Lampert is the quintessential value investor Lampert bets big on just a handful of companies. While his fund buys and sells different firms occasionally, it never owns many of them at the same time – as of the end of last year, RBS Partners held shares of just four different companies, the largest positions being Sears Holdings and AutoNation. Source: Wikimedia Commons
  4. 4. He was once kidnapped Lampert was kidnapped in early 2003. Coming out of his office on a Friday night, he was abducted by four masked-men and held at gunpoint. They took him to a motel and kept him in a bathroom, where he sat for nearly two straight days. Eventually, he was able to talk himself out of it, convincing his kidnappers to dump him on the side of the road. Source: Tobias Maier via Wikimedia Commons
  5. 5. He was once kidnapped Although the police eventually apprehended his abductors, not everyone believed the story. At the time, Lampert was negotiating Kmart’s refinancing, and some suggested that he may have concocted the story as a stall tactic to buy himself extra time. Source: Wikimedia Commons
  6. 6. Lampert is a fan of Ayn Rand Lampert is a noted fan of the philosopher Ayn Rand, a controversial author and thinker known for unbridled free market capitalism. Rand was fundamentally opposed to nearly all forms of government regulation. Source: Wikimedia Commons
  7. 7. Lampert is a fan of Ayn Rand Recently, Lampert’s Rand obsession has come back to haunt him. As Sears’ retail business has continued to suffer, some have suggested that Lampert’s management philosophy is to blame. Rather than work as a team, Lampert encourages Sears’ business segments to act as independent entities, competing with one another for success and resources. Source: Wikimedia Commons
  8. 8. Much of his personal wealth is in Sears Holdings In addition to keeping about half of his fund’s investments in Sears Holdings stock, Lampert himself is the single largest shareholder, owning nearly one-quarter of the company. Source: Wikimedia Commons
  9. 9. Much of his personal wealth is in Sears Holdings In addition to being the single largest shareholder, Lampert also has extensive executive power as both Sears’ chairman and CEO. Lampert has been chairman of Sears Holdings since it was created from the merger with Kmart in 2005. He didn’t become CEO until early last year, following the departure of former IBM exec Lou D’Ambrosio. Source: Wikimedia Commons
  10. 10. Lampert was once widely compared to Warren Buffett Although Lampert’s luster has faded somewhat in recent years, Forbes once compared him to Warren Buffett and the “Steve Jobs of the investing world.” Until 2007, Lampert’s fund had averaged annual returns of nearly 30% after fees. Source: Wikimedia Commons
  11. 11. Lampert was once widely compared to Warren Buffett But Sears’ recent struggles have taken their toll. Although Lampert’s personal wealth is still north of $3 billion according to Forbes, his hedge fund has faced widespread redemptions in recent months. Rather than sell the shares, Lampert has distributed millions of dollars in Sears Holdings stock to his fleeing investors. Source: Wikimedia Commons
  12. 12. Now learn about Warren Buffett