Recently, the LA Business Journal took a look (sub. req.) at some of the many billionaires who hang out in LA a lot, do business owner, maybe own a home, but technically live elsewhere. Credit Suisse's LA head of private banking believes there are more and more of these richies around town these days: "The office, which caters to the ultrawealthy, is seeing as much as 20 percent of its new assets coming from people who don't live permanently in Los Angeles." (Blame high tax rates, "the perception that crowded Los Angeles is not a great place to raise a family," or just the rise of telecommuting and secondary home ownership.) Suburbanist Joel Kotkin thinks the trend is bad news for our business community: "L.A. used to be a town where our business leaders were real leaders?Disney, the O’Malleys, the Chandlers – they built this city. Their identities were intertwined with the identity of the city. Do [AEG head Philip] Anschutz or (Chicago-based Los Angeles Times owner Sam) Zell have any real identity with L.A.?" Well, let's find out. Here's a rundown on 11 billionaires who make SoCal their second home:
Name: Charles Cohen
Business: Pacific Design Center owner; founder of Cohen Media Group, which has produced films including Frozen River
Primary residence: New York
LA pied-a-terre: West Hollywood condo
Loves LA: "L.A.’s a great place. It’s attractive for a lot of reasons,” he said. “The weather is wonderful, the physical beauty of the place is spectacular, the lifestyle is attractive and the business opportunities are as good as anywhere else, if not better."
Name: Larry Ellison
Business: Founder of tech company Oracle Corp.; owner of a hotel and two restaurants in Malibu
Primary residence: NorCal
LA pied-a-terre: Owns a dozen properties in Malibu and "multiple homes on Carbon Beach"
Loves LA: Nope, not seen out and about very much.
Name: Stanley Kroenke
Business: Owns the Malibu Colony Shopping Center
Primary residence: Missouri
Name: Paul Allen
Business: Microsoft cofounder; has a hand in Hawthorne-based SpaceX
Primary residence: Pacific Northwest
LA pied-a-terre: One on Carbon Beach in Malibu, one in Beverly Hills
Name: Michael Dell
Business: Founder of Dell Inc.; owns Santa Monica's Fairmont Miramar Hotel
Primary residence: Austin, TX
Name: Mark Walter
Business: Head of Guggenheim Partners, just bought the Dodgers
Primary residence: Chicago
LA pied-a-terre: "Has promised to buy a home here"
Name: Timothy Headington
Business: Head of Headington Oil; co-owns GK Films, which produced Hugo
Primary residence: Dallas
Name: Jeff Greene
Business: Made a ton of money betting against subprime mortgage-backed securities
Primary residence: Palm Beach, FL
LA pied-a-terre: Still appears to own a totally bananas Sunset Plaza house with its own dance club, but apparently now "when he’s in Los Angeles, he quietly spends time with his wife and two young children at his 3,000-square-foot second home in Malibu."
Name: John Paul DeJoria
Business: Cofounder of John Paul Mitchell Systems and Patron Spirits Co.
Primary residence: Austin, TX
Loves LA: "[C]iting his tough Echo Park upbringing, DeJoria supports L.A. charities, including donating to the Boys & Girls Club of East Los Angeles and Chrysalis, a non-profit benefiting the homeless population."
Name: Nicolas Berggruen
Primary residence: None, known as the "homeless billionaire"
LA pied-a-terre: Beverly Hills's Peninsula Hotel
Loves LA: "With a $2.3 billion fortune, he has been able to pursue one of his passions, art collecting, and is now a trustee of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art."
Name: Yan Cheung
Business: Founder of America Chung Nam Inc., an exporter based in Industry
Primary residence: China
· L.A.’s Part-Time Billionaires [LABJ, sub. req.]