The initial public offering of Rocket Companies, parent of mortgage behemoth Quicken Loans, more than quadrupled the wealth of founder Dan Gilbert and made him the 28th richest person in the world, according to a Bloomberg ranking.
Thursday’s debut on the New York Stock Exchange, trading with the ticker RKT, boosted the net worth of 58-year-old Gilbert to $34.1 billion when the shares closed at $21.51. Quicken, the largest U.S. mortgage lender, originated about $145 billion of home loans last year, according to regulatory filings.
The boost from the Rocket IPO puts Gilbert’s wealth right behind Michael Dell, the founder and CEO of Dell Technologies, No. 27 in the Bloomberg ranking, and ahead of Colin Huang, at No. 29, the founder and chairman of Pinduoduo, a Chinese e-commerce company backed by Tencent. Huang retired at the age of 33.
It also puts Gilbert ahead of Chinese real estate tycoon Hui Ka Yan, at No. 30, and Laurene Powell Jobs, at No. 31, who inherited the fortune of her husband, Apple founder Steve Jobs, when he died in 2011. Abby Johnson, CEO of Fidelity Investments, is in the #36 spot.
In addition to being the chairman of Rocket, Gilbert is the majority owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers, a National Basketball Association franchise.
He also is chairman of Rock Ventures, which “has invested and committed billions to acquiring and developing more than 100 properties, including new construction of ground-up developments in downtown Detroit and Cleveland, totalling more than 18 million square feet in Detroit’s downtown urban core,” according to the IPO’s prospectus.
Gilbert graduated from Michigan State University with a bachelor’s degree and got a law degree from Wayne State University, according to the prospectus. He founded Quicken Loans in 1985, then named Rock Financial, and served as its CEO until 2002.
Gilbert sold Rock Financial in 1999 to Intuit, a software company that renamed it Quicken Loans. Gilbert bought the lender back three years later and kept the new name.
Gilbert is known as a supporter of President Donald Trump – at least, that’s how the president described him at a White House event – and Quicken donated $750,000 to Trump’s inauguration.
At a June 2017 gathering in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Trump asked the crowd, “Where’s Dan Gilbert?” and called him up for a photo op.
“He’s a great friend of mine, a supporter, and a great guy,” Trump said of Gilbert.
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