Dirk Ziff Net Worth & Biography
|Popular Name:||Dirk Ziff|
|Real Name:||Dirk Edward Ziff|
|Birth Place:||United States|
|Net Worth:||$5 Billion|
American businessman Dirk Edward Ziff is the older brother of Robert Ziff and Daniel Ziff. The three men inherited their grandfather’s company in 1994 but chose to diversify into other businesses instead of following in the footpaths of their father who had earlier inherited the company and built it up to a popular magazine publisher in the United States. Dirk’s grandfather, William Bernard Ziff Sr., was one of the founders of the Ziff Davis publishing company which started operations in 1927. In 1994, the three brothers sold the company for $1.4 billion to Forstmann Little Company as they didn’t want anything to do with the family business. The bulk of Dirk Ziff’s fortune started to build up when he and his siblings decided to collectively invest their inheritance in real estate, debt, equities, commodities, private equity, and hedge funds in America and England through their investment company called Ziff Brothers Investments. Furthermore, in 2015, Dirk opened his own family office, Ziff Capital Partners. Today, the Ziff brothers are reportedly individually investing in different businesses and are all multimillionaires.
A graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Business School, Dirk Ziff had work experience in the publishing and broadcasting sectors prior to working with Ziff Brothers Investments. He was Vice Chairman at Robin Hood Foundation, served on the Advisory Board of Huron River Venture Partners as a member, worked with The Weinstein Company board, served on the board of the World Surf League, and was a board member of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Early Life: Childhood, Education
Born in the year 1965, Dirk Edward Ziff is the grandson of William Bernard Ziff Sr. and the eldest son of Jewish American publishing tycoon William Bernard Ziff Jr. His mother, Barbara Ingrid Beitz, was a German lady whose parents were honored with the “Righteous among the Nations” honorific by Israel for risking their lives to save Jews and providing refuge during the Second World War II. His father, William Ziff Jr., had expanded the Ziff-Davis magazine business that was founded by William Bernard Ziff Sr., and included titles such as PC Magazine, Popular Aviation, and Car and Driver.
William Bernard Ziff Jr. served as a trustee of the Trinity School in New York City. And it was from this school that Ziff graduated in 1981, before advancing to Columbia University for a Bachelor of Arts, graduating in 1988. He then proceeded to Harvard University for a Master of Business Administration.
Professional Life: Business Career
In 1994, his father sold 95 percent of Ziff Davis Company for around $1.4 billion and went into retirement. Dirk and his brothers Daniel and Robert inherited the family fortune and went into other things, as they were never interested in taking over the family’s company as their father had originally planned. With the wealth they had inherited, Dirk and his brothers went on to establish New York City-based Ziff Brothers Investments. They invested their inheritances broadly across private equity, hedge funds, equities, debt, real estate, and commodities. They also provided seed money to hedge fund manager Daniel Och in exchange for a 10 percent share in Och-Ziff Capital Management which went public in 2007.
In 2014, Ziff Brothers Investments was dissolved by the three brothers, and each of them went on to continue making investments independently.
Dirk Ziff and two business partners Paul Speaker and Terry Hardy own the investment vehicle called ZoSea. In 2013, ZoSea acquired the Association of Surfing Professionals (now known as the World Surf League). Mr. Ziff was also a founding board member of the Robin Hood Foundation in 2006.
Personal Life: Wife, Children, Private Interests
Dirk Edward Ziff is married to Natasha Bacigalupo who formerly worked as a Forbes magazine reporter. They have two children and reside in North Palm Beach, Florida. When not tied down by their daily jobs, the couple like to vacation at their Martha’s Vineyard home.
In 2017, when allegations of sexual assault were disclosed, Mr. Ziff resigned from the board of The Weinstein Company along with fellow board members Tim Sarnoff and Marc Lasry.
Dirk Ziff Net Worth
Dirk Ziff and his brothers have successfully multiplied the sum of money they inherited from their father back in 1994, and they did this by investing in multiple businesses concerned with hedge funds, real estate, debts, and others, before deciding to invest individually. Today, Forbes magazine estimates Dirk Ziff’s net worth at $5 billion dollars.
Dirk is one of the three sons of publishing tycoon William Bernard Ziff, Jr. who sold 95 percent of his business to Forstmann Little for about 1.4 billion dollars and passed the fortune to his children, who went ahead to establish the New York City-based company Ziff Brothers Investments, through which they invested their inheritances broadly across different ventures that eventually paid off hugely and set the wheel in motion for their wealth and ultimately made it possible for each man to seize a slot of the wealthiest Americans’ list.