Web Extra: The REAL Donald Bren, With Commentary

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The hard copy of this week's cover story--a media criticism on a recent Los Angeles Times profile of Southern California's richest man, Donald Bren--contains a two-page spread that dissects the puff piece.

Bren and his Irvine Co. minions are elated with reporter Scott Kraft's story, which presented the billionaire as a near-flawless superhero.

Did you know Bren is a "ruggedly handsome [man, whose alleged personal traits also include] a mix of self-discipline, creativity and entrepreneurship salted with an abiding thirst for knowledge"?

And those were just Kraft's unattributed gifts to Orange County's most powerful man.

Click on the image below to see our specific criticisms of the Times news story and go HERE to see our essay on the topic.


CLICK TO ENLARGE!




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13 comments
Peterson
Peterson

The most arrogant, Idiotic comments :)So, the man owns the land, he can build whatever he wants....He still try to preserve some open space- that is by the way dry brush and grass...I'd rather see more green belts...So, he is going to give his company shares to his kids...What do you propose? Give it to you? Or live it to local bureaucrats?You think government-control land looks better than Irvine or Newport Suburbia?Have you seen Cleveland or Detroit?Of course, donations to universities or schools that makes those institutions better also increased Bren's wealth and increased his profit from nearby apartments. But this is win-win situation. That just shows that the man is smart and cares about long term investment in the area , not short term profit...You can post your stupid comments all over the article, but Bren's company is a clear success. It provides great properties for owners and renters. And hundreds of thousands of people vote for his success with their wallets, buying or renting in this area, even now in this market.,

Paul
Paul

I believe that he is worth a lot more than the estimated 12.5 billion. Why?44,000 apartments with an average value of $250k per unit = 11 billion8.4 million sq ft of retail with average value of $450. per sq ft = 3.8 billion40 million sq ft of office space with average value of $350. per sq ft = 14 billionLand for 30,000 homes with average lot value of $200k = 6 billionCash on hand of more than 5 billion plus other holdings valued at 5 billion or moreFor a total asset value of $45 billion with less than 5 billion in debt = $40 billion net worthWinning!!!!

Jarias81
Jarias81

I've lived in OC most of my life until recently I've moved back to Costa Mesa and been here for two years now. Six years ago when I left you were able to see the Irvine hills empty off the 405 fwy by Culver and all you see is houses now. I carpool to work everyday and exit off Jamboree. I drive North toward Tustin on Jamboree and once you pass Barranca on an early morning while driviving through the old air base all you can see are houses after houses after houses. What ever happened to our beautiful Orange groves that once made and gave this county its name. What a concrete jungle,what a greedy old man.

Lili Lin
Lili Lin

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me
me

The LA Times must be on his payroll too ;)

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Gina
Gina

More alarming evidence of the decline of the LA Times. Good work, Moxley. But I think your story is missing one key point of your best investigation yet into the Don Bren and Irvine Co. You reported years ago that Bren's land donations to the public weren't always noble deeds because he was giving cliffs etc and earthquake/fire hazard property. I Googled and found your old story: http://www.ocweekly.com/1999-0... That should have been mentioned.

CDRZander
CDRZander

If that's an accurate figure, based on your analysis, then why doesn't Forbes rank him as NO 2 or NO 3, depending on Warren Buffet's ranking?  It's entirely possibly ole' DB is hiding his net worth from publicly published rankings of mega-billioinaires so he won't be such a big tax target for Obummer's redistro, Commie agenda.  I wonder how much Brigitte stands to be bequeathed in his will?  A savvy lawyer like her might be inked in for half of whatever he's worth when Bren "buys the ranch."  I couldn't help myself in using IC double-entendre.   

TWS
TWS

Paul, like your analysis, where did you get your info from?

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