Meet Stephen Ross, the billionaire developer of Hudson Yards and chairman of Equinox, who's one of the richest people in New York and reportedly plans to host a fundraiser for Trump in his Hamptons home
- Billionaire Stephen Ross is reportedly hosting a reelection fundraiser for President Donald Trump on Friday, August 9.
- Ross is the chairman of Related Cos., which has a portfolio of developments that includes the Time Warner Center, Hudson Yards, and Equinox and Soul Cycle.
- Equinox members and Soul Cycle members are now threatening to boycott the fitness brands, Business Insider reported.
- Ross has an estimated net worth of $7.7 billion.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Real estate mogul Stephen Ross is in hot water.
Reports that he's holding a reelection fundraiser for President Donald Trump this Friday, August 9, at $100,000 per ticket have sparked backlash, according to The Washington Post.
Ross, age 79, is chairman of Related Cos., which owns Equinox and SoulCycle. Equinox members and SoulCycle visitors are now threatening to cut ties with the trendy fitness brands following the news, reported Business Insider's Kate Taylor. However, Equinox issued a statement via Twitter on August 7, saying it doesn't support the event. SoulCycle, too, issued a statement the same day, noting that the company "in no way endorses the political fundraising event being held later this week."
Ross has since issued a statement in response to the backlash, per Miami Herald reporter Adam Beasley. "I always have been an active participant in the democratic process," Ross said. "While some prefer to sit outside of the process and criticize, I prefer to engage directly and support the things I deeply care about."
In the statement, Ross said he's known Trump for 40 years, and "while we agree on some issues, we strongly disagree on many others, and I have never been bashful about expressing my opinions."
Ross has an estimated net worth of $7.7 billion, according to Forbes. He's known as the man behind New York City's Time Warner Center and the most expensive real estate development in US history - Hudson Yards - as well as the owner of NFL team Miami Dolphins.
Here's a look at Ross' life and fortune.
Real estate developer and investor Stephen Ross has a Forbes estimated net worth of $7.7 billion, thanks to his position as chairman of global real estate and lifestyle company Related Cos.
Ross founded Related Cos. in 1972 with $10,000 he borrowed from his mother, he told CNN.
Related Cos. owns or is currently developing $60 billion worth of properties worldwide, according to its website.
One of those properties is the most expensive real estate development in US history — New York City's $25 billion Hudson Yards.
But Related Cos. is most famously known for developing New York City's Time Warner Center near Central Park.
Related Cos.' portfolio also includes trendy fitness brands Equinox and Soul Cycle.
But Related Cos. isn't Ross' only business — in 2012, he cofounded private investment firm RSE Ventures, which specializes in sports and entertainment, media and marketing, food and lifestyle, and technology companies.
Ross also owns NFL football team Miami Dolphins, which he purchased for more than $1 billion.
Ever the sports fanatic, Ross also led the creation of global pre-season soccer tournament International Champions Cup, which reached more than 140 million viewers in 2017.
Ross holds a number of esteemed positions at various non-profits and institutions, from health care to arts and culture.
Ross is big on philanthropy, particularly sustainability and higher education. He's donated some $380 million to his alma mater, the University of Michigan, over the years.
Ross has donated to both Democratic and Republican parties throughout the years.
Recently, Ross stirred controversy following a report that he's hosting a Trump fundraiser in his Hamptons home for $100,000 per ticket, according to The Washington Post.
Ross works and lives in the Time Warner Center, but he recently put his 8,500-square-foot penthouse on the market for $75 million because he and wife Kara are moving to Hudson Yards.
Aside from his main residence, Ross has spent more than half a billion dollars building up his own personal real estate portfolio in New York and Florida.
When he's not working, snapping up real estate, or getting philanthropically or politically involved, Ross spends time golfing, boating, and exercising.
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