Kirk Kerkorian Net Worth: $4.2 Billion
Kirk Kerkorian, also known as “the smiling cobra”, was an American businessman who had a net worth of $4.2 billion. He was considered one of the grandfathers of Las Vegas and the “father of the megaresort”. Kerkorian dropped out of school in the 8th grade to become a boxer and later became a daredevil pilot during World War II. After the war, Kerkorian spent $5,000 on a Cessna and worked as a general aviation pilot.
In 1962, Kerkorian bought 80 acres in Las Vegas for $960,000. He went on to buy a controlling stake in the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film studio in 1969 and opened the original MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in 1973. Kerkorian stepped down as chairman of MGM in 2011 and became the first director emeritus.
Despite selling $750 million worth of shares of MGM International Resorts in recent years, Kerkorian announced that he was interested in boosting his stake in it via his private investment firm, Tracinda. He was also involved in the American auto industry and had other business ventures.
Kerkorian devoted himself to philanthropic activities, including his Dream Fund which supported academic programs and medical research at UCLA. He died on June 16, 2015, at the age of 98.