Friday, May 2, 2014

The Michael Milken-Magic Johnson Connection, How Far Will It Go?

Guggenheim Partners is one of the most powerful financial services firms in the world.

The firm is headquartered in New York City and Chicago with over 2,500 staff located in 20 cities throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. It has more than $210 billion of assets under management. Michael Milken reportedly has invested $800 million with the firm. The SEC is currently investigating whether Milken has violated his ban from providing financial advice because of his close association with Guggenheim.

How close an association?

In addition to a long list of global cronies at the recent Milken Conference in Beverly Hills (SEE: Michael Milken's Cozying Up to Third World Government Related Creeps and The Milken Global Conference Gets More and More Cozy With Government Operatives Every Year), Milken also had a number of Guggenheim partners participating and speaking at the conference:

Doug  Atkin
Doug Atkin 
Senior Managing Director, Venture Investments, Guggenheim Partners
John  Casesa
John Casesa 
Senior Managing Director, Guggenheim Partners
Scott   Minerd
Scott Minerd
Managing Partner, Global Chief Investment Officer, Guggenheim Partners
Alan   Schwartz
Alan Schwartz 
Executive Chairman, Guggenheim Partners
Henry  Silverman
Henry Silverman 
Global Head of Real Estate and Infrastructure, Guggenheim Partners

In March 2012, Guggenheim Baseball Management acquired the Los Angeles Dodgers team for $2.15 billion in cash. The consortium consisted of Guggenheim controlling partner Mark Walter, former Los Angeles Laker Magic Johnson and other partners. Johnson has become the visible high profile head of the Dodgers since the acquisition. Johnson also spoke at the Milken conference.

Johnson is a pretty shrewd businessman and has accumulated substantial wealth, but he is nowhere near Milken in terms of shrewdness or wealth. His close association with Guggenheim Partners, which in turn is is closely associated with Milken, suggests that Johnson is something of a lieutenant in at least part of Milken's operations.

It's something to keep an eye on. Will Magic and Guggenheim now make a move on the Clippers? Will Magic start getting involved with Milken in various third world deals?

The third world is a very tricky place, from FT:
Rio Tinto’s lawsuit claiming Vale cheated it out of billions of dollars adds to the conflicting accounts of the battle over a trove of minerals in a remote corner of Africa...

Rio’s claim, which the Anglo-Australian group filed in New York on Wednesday, alleges that Vale of Brazil conspired with Beny Steinmetz and the mining arm of the Israeli tycoon’s family conglomerate, BSG Resources, to “steal” part of its rights to the world-class Simandou iron-ore deposit in Guinea...

Rio’s claim also names Mahmoud Thiam, a former Guinean mining minister, among the alleged conspirators in the scheme to steal its assets. It alleged that he received a $200m bribe from Mr Steinmetz for facilitating the granting of mining licenses to BSGR for the half of Simandou that had been stripped from Rio.
Will Magic follow Milken into this part of the world?


  1. Buried Secrets
    How an Israeli billionaire wrested control of one of Africa’s biggest prizes.
    by Patrick Radden Keefe

    Read more:

  2. Arctic's PEUture

    The Sydney Morning Herald reported:

    Hugh Short wants you to invest in an emerging economy with few people, fewer buildings, and which is melting at the fastest pace in millennia.

    He's talking about the Arctic, which Scott Minerd, the chief investment officer of Guggenheim Partners LLC, calls "not just the best opportunity of our generation, but of the last 12,000 years." Short, a native ofAlaska, said Pt Capital LLC, which he co-founded last year, is the first and only US private-equity firm dedicated to investing in the Arctic.

    Short, 41, is attempting to raise $US250 million for the firm's first fund by year-end.

    Guggenheim Partners may join Short's PEU:
    Bloomberg, the originator of the Herald piece, did it's best to offer a Carlyle dodge with this quote:

    "It is such a frontier place," Marcel van Poecke, managing director of Carlyle International Energy Partners, said in an interview at a conference in Lausanne, Switzerland, on April 2. "That is for the big oil companies."

    The Carlyle Group is already in Alaska and wants to do more. A co-founder's spouse is in a unique position to influence public opinion on Carlyle's behalf. That's what Bloomberg missed in order to get their next Rubenstein interview.