Tom and Jean (Gigi) Prizker
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/ By Stanley Green /
Tom and Jean or ” Gigi” as she is better known are brother and sister members of the Chicago-based family. They have got together to make a return to the world of big business after years of asset divestment paying close to $1 billion to acquire Glassport, Pennsylvania based TMS International, one of the largest steel mill servicing company in the United States.
During the past decade, the Pritzker dynasty initiated a unanimous family decision to divest themselves of each of their diversified business operations, a mission that took almost ten years to accomplish. The only business interest that the family didn’t manage to turn into cash was the Hyatt hotel group which they eventually took public.
At the end of the Pritzker family sell off a considerable fortune had been raised that was promptly distributed among the third-generation members of the family, a total of eleven cousins. After the final accounts have been made, each and every member of the third-generation Pritzker dynasty found themselves with a multi-million-dollar fortune in the bank, with several of them becoming billionaires.
After that each went their one way, with the most high profile member of the family, Penny Pritzker going on to become U .S. Commerce Secretary.
Now another two cousins, brother and sister team Tom and Gigi Pritzker have decided that the time is right to get the family back into business, and have the wheels in motion by taking control of TMS International.
TMS International work in close cooperation with steel mills across the United States and the World, acting as a kind of brokerage, buying and selling scrap metal and various by-products of the steel making process, through a network of 36 brokerage offices.
Tom and Gigi’s investment firm, the Pritzker Organization LLC, offer of $17.50 a share for TMS, representing a premium of 12 percent on TMS’s most recent stock valuation, was unanimously approved by the TMS board as well as majority shareholder the Onex Corporation, a private equity firm based in Toronto who accepted the Pritzkers offer for their sixty percent stake in the company without too much delay.
According to Tom Pritzker, chairman and CEO of the Pritzker Organization, TMS is a leading provider of mill, procurement, and logistics services to the steel industry, with an exceptional management team and a proven track record of delivering value to its customers.
The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter.
Source TMS website
Thomas and Gigi Pritzker are the children of Jay and Marion Pritzker and grandchildren of Abram Nicholas (known to all as A. N.) and Fanny Pritzker.
Jay Pritzker, working with his brothers Robert and Donald Pritzker were responsible for the considerable diversification of the Marmon Group, the Chicago-based family business empire during the fifties up till the eighties, till it eventually controlled a portfolio numbering more that 60 diversified industrial corporations. They also created the Hyatt Hotel chain in 1957 and owned Braniff Airlines during most of the eighties. With the second generation Pritzker reaching retirement age, the family began to sell off their various businesses, realizing billions of dollars in the process. Their highest profile sales were that of Conwood, a smokeless tobacco company which they sold to Reynolds American, the cigarette company for $3.5 billion in 2006, and the Marmon Group which they sold to Berkshire Hathaway, controlled by Warren Buffett the following year for $4.5 billion.
Thomas Pritzker manages the various Pritzker family business assets, including acting as Executive Chairman of the Hyatt Hotels Corporation. Apart from his family business activities, Pritzker also founded and acts as chairman of North America Western Asia Holdings LLC (Nawah), an investment and advisory firm that invests in Iraqi companies , whilst providing advisory services to companies looking to expand their business activities in the Middle East, and particularly Iraq.
Apart from his business interests, Thomas Pritzker acts as chairman of the board of the Art Institute of Chicago as well as being a member of the board of directors of University of California, Los Angeles ( UCLA) .
Thomas Pritzker holds an MBA from the University Of Chicago Booth School Of Business.
Jean “Gigi” Pritzker who graduated with a B.A. in anthropology from Stanford University is well known for her activities in the film industry as well as her philanthropic efforts.