Monday, April 20, 2009

Big money decided Al Gore was their front man

NY Times, 3/6/08, 'Al Gore's Big Investment': "His bid for the presidency didn’t pan out, but financially speaking, the past eight years or so have apparently been good ones for Al Gore.

Mr. Gore doesn’t disclose much about his personal finances, but Bloomberg News came across a regulatory filing disclosing that he recently invested $35 million with the Capricorn Investment Group, a firm that Bloomberg said puts clients’ assets into hedge funds and invests in “makers of environmentally friendly products.” That’s a big wad of cash for someone who reported barely $2 million in assets in 2000, when his job as vice president came to an end.

Capricorn is an interesting firm: It was founded by Jeffrey Skoll, a former president of eBay who was also executive producer for Mr. Gore’s documentary, “An Inconvenient Truth.”

Bloomberg suggests that Mr. Gore’s ties to Apple, whose board he joined in 2003, and Google, for which has has been a senior adviser since 2001, could be part of the answer. Shares of both of those companies have surged in recent years.

We would note that a recent regulatory filing shows that in January, Mr. Gore exercised 1,000 options to buy Apple stock for a mere $7.48 a share. (The stock was trading Thursday above $124.) The filing also indicates that he still had 59,000 Apple options left.

Mr. Gore also earns substantial sums from speaking engagements, and he was recently made a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, the top-tier Silicon Valley venture capital firm.

His fortune may soon get even bigger. Current Media, the youth-oriented cable network of which he is a founder and chairman, is planning to raise as much as $100 million in an initial public offering."

Go to Article from Bloomberg News »

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