The billionaire who wasn't : how Chuck Feeney secretly made and gave away a fortune

by Conor O'Clery

Hardcover, 2007




New York : Public Affairs c2007.


"In 1988, Forbes magazine hailed Chuck Feeney as the twenty-third richest American alive. No one knew until then that he was extremely wealthy. Or was he?" "Born during the Depression in Elizabeth, New Jersey, Feeney had made a fortune as co-founder of Duty Free Shoppers, the world's largest duty-free retail chain. How he did it is one of the great untold retail stories of modern times. But the greater untold story is that Feeney had in fact given away his fortune, in its totality, to endow Atlantic Philanthropies - one of the most generous and secretive philanthropic funds in the world. Atlantic Philanthropies is committed to giving away all its assets - currently they stand at $4 billion - during the next decade, an unprecedented example of the "giving while living" philosophy. Through the achievements of Atlantic Philanthropies, Chuck Feeney's influence has become even more impressive than his wealth." "Feeney is a frugal man who travels economy class and does not own a house or a car. He has largely kept out of the public eye - until now. He has revealed his secret life only because he hopes his story will encourage something in which he passionately believes: that rich individuals have a moral obligation to put their wealth to good use while they are alive."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member wyvernfriend
The story of Chuck Feeney, how he made his millions and gave most of it away.

It's interesting but it does show how a lot of rich people avoid the taxes the poorer have to face. I was torn between admiring him and wanting a chunk of his capital.
LibraryThing member lalalibrarian
I say it was OK only b/c I think the subject is interesting. The author can't write and the editors didn't do their job. I muddled through this for about three weeks and now I'm giving up. I wish someone else had written this book!!
LibraryThing member Peterabun
Very interesting story. I know the subject somewhat as I worked for his company for about four years. This is a really good story, poorly told. It gets pretty boring in spots. Chuck Feeney is a very unique individual. We need many more like him in the business world, instead of the Nardelli's and that ilk.



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