Citadel Group, an American hedge fund, was founded by CEO and president Ken Griffin. Griffin was born in 1968 in Dayton Beach, California. He is the proud owner of a hedge fund company that is ranked among the best, largest and overly successful in North America and the world at large with investment, assets and capital of a tune of over $25 billion. Citadel is the largest alternative management firm in North America. His childhood was not phenomenal until the time he joined Harvard University to pursue a degree in economics. He encountered an article that was written on Forbes magazine and it totally changed his life. The article had information about hedge funds and by the time he was out of freshman hood, he founded his own hedge fund that was dedicated to convertible bond arbitrage. Since he was a student, he experienced challenges in raising capital for his business. Griffin’s family and friends were supportive and together they raised $265,000 including her grandmother’s life savings. His innovative nature pushed him to install a satellite in his dorm to assist him in getting real time market data for making informed decisions in 1987. Due to this success at a young age, he launched yet another hedge fund, together with the first one, he was managing over $ million by the time he was graduating from college in 1989.
Frank Meyer, a close ally to griffin gave him $1 million to invest. Meyer was surprised by the way the money had brought a massive turnover and Griffin Founded Citadel with $4.6 million in 1990. Citadel, under the brilliant management of Griffin, witnessed a robust growth within eight years with over 100 highly skilled and experienced personnel and managing $1 billion investment capital.
Acknowledgement has come in from different sides for Griffin. In 2002, his name appeared for the first time in CFO’s magazine as one of the most influential people in finance industry. Another recognition is the numerous appearance in the Forbes 400, which was the initial source of his idea. In 2014, Forbes released its annual list of the 400 richest people in America. Griffin featured in jumped on the list and had jumped 14 spots ranking position 89. This is evident in his support for Illinois GOP governor candidate Bruce Rauner as he generously donated a check worth $2.5 million to Rauner’s campaigns.
Griffin again made history in donation at Harvard University by donating $150 million, the biggest single donation ever. The institution felt that there was something that was needed to be done in honor of selfless Griffin. For this reason, they arranged a ceremony for renaming its Financial Aid Office to Ken Griffin ’89. The $150 million gift will change lives for so many generations to come. The Program is meant to ensure that students whose parents had a house hold income of less than $65,000. The institution now offers direct financial aid to about 60% of the population enabling most to graduate debt-free from the institution. According to a report released in March this year, Griffin is estimated to have a net worth of $6.6 billion.