* Earlier today, Gov. Rauner told reporters this about JB Pritzker…
And if you want to see how good a businessman he is, go look up how he did with his New World Ventures, you can really see some truth about how good a businessman he is.
* The Pritzker campaign responded…
JB decided to cap new investments from a New World Ventures fund in the aftermath of the national collapse of the tech industry in the early 2000s. He refunded money that had been invested in the fund by those outside of his family and personally reached into his own pocket to pay them back. Since that time, JB Pritzker and New World Ventures, which is now called Pritzker Group Venture Capital, have invested in startup companies that have created thousands of jobs. JB is running on his record of getting big things done for Illinois families and communities, and unlike Bruce Rauner, he does not believe people should be treated like lines on an excel spreadsheet and when you are the governor of a state, you are actually in charge.
As mentioned above, New World Ventures was later renamed Pritzker Group Venture Capital. Click here for more info.
* OK, with that being said, on to the oppo. All emphasis was in the original document…
J.B Pritzker: Investment Genius
J.B. Pritzker Raised His First Outside Investment Funds In The Late 90s
J.B. Pritzker Launched His First Investment Fund – New World Ventures – In 1998 With $10.8 Million From Outside Investors. “Born with one of the most famous names in business, Jay Robert Pritzker is making a name for himself. Outside investors put up the majority of a $10.8-million high-tech investment fund raised last year by New World Venture Partners LLC, the successor to a private venture capital firm Mr. Pritzker launched in 1996 with a $6-million stake from the billionaire Chicago dynasty.” (Paul Merrion, “Venture Vanguard: Pritzker’s At Head Of Class Of Young Fund Teams,” Crain’s Chicago Business, 5/17/99)
In 1999, Pritzker Partnered With William Blair & Co. To Launch His Second Investment Fund – William Blair New World Ventures – With $100 Million From Outside Investors. “Two prominent Chicago financiers — J. B. Pritzker and William Blair & Co. — are teaming up to invest $100 million in the sizzling technology- startup arena. Mr. Pritzker’s New World Ventures has formed a partnership with William Blair Capital Partners LLC to invest in technology firms at their riskiest but potentially most lucrative stage — often before the companies have rung up any sales. The partners’ fund, William Blair New World Ventures, will target emerging Internet, software, telecommunications and networking companies with initial investments between $2 million and $4 million.” (Barbara Rose, “Blair, Pritzker Launch Tech Startup Fund,” Crain’s Chicago Business, 12/20/99)
By 2003, Both Of Pritzker’s Funds Had Suffered Catastrophic Losses
In 2003, New World Ventures Was Down 90 Percent, And William Blair New World Ventures Given Investors Half Their Money Back To Avoid Additional Losses. “Market bubbles don’t distinguish between new money and old money. Whether your name is Andrew ‘Flip’ Filipowski–a self-made software guru starting an Internet incubator–or J.B. Pritzker–a billionaire scion turned venture capitalist–the results of an investing mania can produce similar results… At Pritzker’s New World Ventures, which held limited partners meetings Tuesday, the Evanston firm’s wealthy private investors have been luckier. One of the firm’s funds is down an estimated 90 percent, according to a report from the meeting, while a second fund is giving investors half their money back rather than risking more losses.” (Barbara Rose, “Divine Considering Chapter 11; Pritzker’s New World Ventures Gives Back Funds,” Chicago Tribune, 2/19/03)
• Pritzker Had Raised $10.8 Million In 1998 For New World Ventures – By The End Of 2002 It Was Down To $1.8 Million. “New World’s first fund open to outside investors launched in late 1998: a modest $10.8 million pool with about 60 limited partners. Like Divine, New World was a pioneer: one of the area’s few firms to focus on start-ups with scant financial histories. But like Divine and some other early-stage venture funds, New World has sustained big losses. The first fund’s value at the end of 2002 was an estimated $1.8 million.” (Barbara Rose, “Divine Considering Chapter 11; Pritzker’s New World Ventures Gives Back Funds,” Chicago Tribune, 2/19/03)
• Pritzker Had Raised $80 Million For William Blair New World Ventures In 1999 – In 2003 He Released His Investors From $40 Million In Funding Commitments To Avoid More Losses. “For his second fund, Pritzker teamed up with an old-line Chicago name–an affiliate of regional brokerage William Blair & Co.–to raise about $80 million. Now, New World is releasing limited partners from about $40 million in funding commitments because of what Pritzker terms a severe market ‘downdraft.’” (Barbara Rose, “Divine Considering Chapter 11; Pritzker’s New World Ventures Gives Back Funds,” Chicago Tribune, 2/19/03)
Pritzker Claimed He Had Gotten A “Good Reaction” From His Investors; His Investors Disagreed
Pritzker Claimed He Had Gotten “A Good Reaction From The Vast Majority” Of His Investors. “I think we’ve gotten a good reaction from the vast majority” of investors about the givebacks, Pritzker said Tuesday.” (Barbara Rose, “Divine Considering Chapter 11; Pritzker’s New World Ventures Gives Back Funds,” Chicago Tribune, 2/19/03)
New World Ventures Investors Disagreed With Pritzker’s Characterization, With One Saying “People Are Very, Very Unhappy…They’ve Lost Almost All Their Money. “An investor in the first fund offered a different view. ‘People are very, very unhappy,’ he said. ‘They’ve lost almost all their money.’” (Barbara Rose, “Divine Considering Chapter 11; Pritzker’s New World Ventures Gives Back Funds,” Chicago Tribune, 2/19/03)
* Excerpt from a Rauner campaign press release this afternoon..
Today, Governor Bruce Rauner called out JB Pritzker’s spectacularly bad business record and questioned his taxes. When asked by reporters why JB Pritzker only reported $15 million in income despite his $3.4 billion net worth, Governor Rauner responded by saying “he has to be the worst investor on the planet.”
Here’s a history lesson: In 1998, JB Pritzker started New World Ventures. By 2003, that fund had lost 90% of its value.
In 1999, JB Pritzker started William Blair New World Ventures with $80 million in investments. By 2003, Pritzker returned only half that money ($40 million) to investors after the fund produced poor returns.
(“Divine Considering Chapter 11; Pritzker’s New World Ventures Gives Back Funds,” Chicago Tribune, 2/19/03)