Bloomberg Billionaires Index

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#260 James Chambers $5.87B

Random fact: An actor, dancer and choreographer who runs Field Hand Productions.

Overview

Chambers owns 16 percent of Cox Enterprises, a closely held media and automotive services conglomerate. The Atlanta-based business controls the third-biggest cable operator in the U.S., which serves about 6 million homes and businesses. The group had sales of $20.1 billion in 2016 and employs about 60,000 people.

As of May 29, 2017:
Last change +$12.1M (+0.2%)
YTD change +$107M (+1.9%)
Industry Media & Telecom
Biggest asset Cox Communications
Citizenship United States
Age 60
Wealth Inherited
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

James Chambers's net worth of $5.87B can buy ...

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troy ounces of gold
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barrels of crude oil

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of the GDP of the United States
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of the total wealth of the 500 richest people in the world
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of the top 100 U.S. college endowments
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of the top 200 U.S. executives’ total awarded compensation
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of U.S. existing home sales
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times the median U.S. household income

Latest News

Net Worth Summary

Cash
Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

Chambers owns 16 percent of Cox Enterprises, a closely held media conglomerate. He received the stake in December 2013 after his mother, Anne Cox Chambers, dissolved a trust that held 49.4 percent of Cox. Ownership is based on court documents and Cox's disclosure to Bloomberg that internal transactions resulted in equal stakes among the two owner families.

Cox Enterprises has three units: Cox Communications, Cox Media Group and Cox Automotive. Cable company Cox Communications is the third-largest cable operator in the U.S., according to the company. It had revenue of $11 billion in 2016, according to the company website, and debt of $9.2 billion as of May 2017, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The company wouldn't comment on its debt. It's valued using the average enterprise value-to-Ebitda multiple of four publicly traded peer companies: Comcast, Verizon, Scripps Networks, and Rogers Communications.

Cox Media Group operates six daily newspapers, 14 television stations and more than 60 radio stations, among other assets, and had revenue of $1.8 billion in 2016, according to its website. Its valuation is based on the average enterprise value-to-Ebitda multiple of five publicly traded peers: EW Scripps, New York Times, Gannett, McClatchy and Sinclair Broadcast and discounted by 15 percent.

Cox Automotive is the largest provider of online new and used car marketing and software technology. It had revenue of $7.3 billion in 2016, according to its website. Cox Automotive is valued on the average enterprise value-to-Ebitda multiples of KAR Auction Services, CarMax and Penske Automotive.

Kennedy's 25 percent share of corporate-level debt is included as a liability.

Biography

Birthdate: 4/12/1957
Family: Unknown, No children
Education: 1982, Bard College, Graduated

James Cox Chambers is the grandson of James M. Cox, who built a U.S. newspaper chain after buying the Dayton Evening News in 1898. He became a politician, serving first as an Ohio state representative, then as governor. He ran for the U.S. presidency as a Democrat in 1920, losing to fellow newspaper publisher Warren G. Harding. He gave each of his daughters, Anne and Barbara, 49.4 percent of the company. Chambers, born in 1957, is one of Anne's three children. She distributed her stake in the company in 2013.

Today, Cox Enterprises is run by Chambers' cousin, James Kennedy. The company operates dozens of periodicals, television stations and radio stations, as well as one of the largest cable systems in the U.S. and multiple auto sales online marketing ands software divisions.

Chambers is an organic farmer in Columbia County, New York, and is an actor, dancer and choreographer, according to his biography with Communites In Schools, a non-profit of which he is a director. He graduated from Bard College in 1981 and is on the board of directors of that Hudson Valley, New York, school.

He has two adult sons, James and Ulysses, and three grandchildren, according to documents filed with a Georgia court in 2013 as part of his mother's petition to distribute her shares in the company.

Milestones
  • 1898 James M. Cox buys a Dayton, Ohio, newspaper for $26,000.
  • 1919 His mother, Anne Beau Cox Chambers, is born in Dayton, Ohio.
  • 1920 Grandfather James Cox runs as Democratic nominee for president.
  • 1957 James Cox Chambers is born.
  • 1995 Company spins off Cox Communications into a publicly traded subsidiary.
  • 2004 Family takes Cox Communications private.
  • 2013 Anne Chambers distributes stake in Cox Enterprises to James and others.
  • 2014 Cox Enterprises revenue exceeds $17 billion.