Founder and chairman, Equity Group Investments
“Who makes millions in a garage sale?” marveled Crain’s Chicago Business recently. Sam Zell. Who else? Infamous for snapping up distressed properties (a River North garage bought for $7 million in 2013 by a fund he controls sold for $17 million in January), he’s benefiting disproportionately from the continuing rise in real estate values. Now Zell is trying to buy the 140 supermarkets being sold by Jewel-Osco parent Albertsons. He’s even working on a memoir. Its title? Gravedancer. Naturally.