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#498 Jose Fanjul $3.92B

Random fact: Lost several important works of art after fleeing Cuba.

Overview

Along with his brother Alfonso, Fanjul controls Fanjul Corp., a West Palm Beach-based sugar producer and refiner. The closely held company controls brands such as Domino and C&H, had revenue of $4.3 billion in 2015. The family also owns land in Florida, Louisiana and the Dominican Republic, and the 7,000 acre Casa de Campo resort in the Dominican Republic.

As of Aug. 23, 2017:
Last change +$45.1M (+1.2%)
YTD change -$594M (-13.2%)
Industry Food & Beverage
Biggest asset Fanjul Corp.
Citizenship United States
Wealth Inherited
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

Jose Fanjul's net worth of $3.92B can buy ...

0
troy ounces of gold
0
barrels of crude oil

... and is equivalent to ...

0%
of the GDP of the United States
0%
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:

Fanjul's fortune is derived from Fanjul Corp., the holding company for Florida Crystals and other consumer sugar brands. The company had revenue of $4.3 billion in 2015 according to data provided to the South Florida Business Journal private company ranking. 

The billionaire has three siblings and oversees the company with his brother, Alfonso. The ownership breakdown among family members isn't known and the analysis splits the entire fortune equally between two brothers in control of the asset. It's valued using an enterprise value-to-sales multiple of Brazilian sugar company Sao Martinho and German sugar producer Suedzucker.

To account for the fact that neither peer company owns the land they produce from, Fanjul land is valued independently, including 155,000 sugarcane acres in South Florida and 240,000 acres in the Dominican Republic. 

The land in Florida is valued using average 2016 prices for sugar cropland in the state according to the US Department of Agriculture. Dominican Republic acreage is valued using the average listed price for farmland in the Dominican Republic, according to ABC Imobilaria, a Dominican real estate broker. The calculation only includes the acres actively farmed by the Fanjuls -- 166,000 acres according to the company website. Details of land the family owns in Louisiana couldn't be verified, and isn't included in the valuation. The total value of the Fanjul land is calculated to be about $1.7 billion.

Karen Zamani, a spokesperson for Florida Crystals did not respond to requests for comment about the net worth calculation.

Biography

Birthdate:
Family: Unmarried, No children
Education: New York University, MBA Economics, Villanova University, Bachelor's Degree

The son of a wealthy Cuban sugar family, Jose "Pepe" Fanjul left the country and came to the United States when Fidel Castro seized his family’s extensive sugar plantations. In 1960, the family bought sugarcane fields in Florida and settled down to rebuild.

Fanjul took over the family business with his brother, Alfonso "Alfy", Fanjul quickly built a sprawling sugar empire centered on the flagship brand, Florida Crystals. Building out several sugar mills across the United States, the Fanjuls capitalized on high sugar prices brought on by the US government’s support for sugar farmers, and the embargo of sugar imports from Cuba.

The Fanjuls cemented their power in 1998 by forming a partnership with the Sugar Cane Growers Cooperative of Florida to purchase a refiner in Yonkers, New York, American Sugar Refining Company, which would later become ASR Group, the world’s largest cane sugar refining and marketing company. Today, the family-owned parent company, Fanjul Corp., controls major brands such as Domino, C&H, and Tate & Lyle.

The brothers have three siblings and live in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Milestones
  • 1850 Fanjul family begins sugar production in Cuba.
  • 1960 Fanjuls leave Cuba and open a sugar business in the United States.
  • 1982 Patriarch Alfonso Fanjul dies, his sons take over the family business.
  • 1984 Flo-Sun acquires the sugar businesses of Gulf and Western Industries.
  • 1998 Florida Crystals and the Sugar Cane Growers Cooperative acquire ASR.
  • 2001 ASR Group acquires Domino Sugar.
  • 2005 ASR Group acquires C&H Sugar.
  • 2014 Sugar industry wins limits on Mexican sugar exports to the US.