Jeffry Picower was an American investor and philanthropist. He was known for his involvement in the Madoff investment scandal. Picower was accused of reaping around $7 billion in profit from Bernard L. Madoff’s vast Ponzi scheme. He was found dead at his Palm Beach home on October 25, 2009. Jeffry Picower net worth at the time of his death is estimated to be around $1 billion.
Who is Jeffry Picower?
|Jeffry M. Picower
|Date of Birth
|May 5, 1942
|67 years old
|Palm Beach, Florida
|October 25, 2009
Jeffry Picower was an investor, lawyer, and certified public accountant from Florida. He was listed as one of the 400 richest people in U. S. in 2009. Jeffry alongside his wife, Barbara, created The Jeffry M. and Babara Picower Foundation in 1989.
He involved his long-time friend, Bernard Madoff at the foundation, where Madoff managed foundation assets listed at more than $1 billion. Jeffry Picower was born on May 5, 1942, in the Bronx, New York.
Jeffry Picower Net Worth & Career
In the 1980s, Jeffry Picower worked at Laventhol & Horwath as an accountant. During his working tenure at Laventhol & Horwarth, he set up questionable tax shelters. Subsequently, one of his clients sued him and the firm after the IRS challenged their validity.
Later, the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission rebuked him in 1983 for lately disclosing his greater than 5% position in the company involved in the merger. Later, he and the entrepreneur, Anthony Cerami established a charity named the Picower Institute for Medical Research in 1991 with an initial endowment of $10 million.
Later, the charity spun off into a for-profit company named Cytokine Networks. The company was later merged with a privately held firm, PharmaSciences. Afterward, the merged company was named Cytokine PharmaSciences. Later, it was revealed that Jeffry Picower controlled 86.2% and owned 76% of PharmaSciences stock which eventually put him in a conflict of interest in merger negotiations.
In 2000, he had to give $21 million to other shareholders after the Physicial Computer Network, Inc. went bankrupt. In 2004, the company was taken over by Cardinal Health for $1.6 billion.
Picower became a member of the board of trustees after creating The Jeffry M. and Barbara Picower Foundation in 1989. The foundation’s assets were managed by his longtime friend, Bernard Madoff. Later, the foundation distributed more than $268 million in grants to many American organizations. It further granted $50 million to the neuroscience research center, Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2002. Unfortunately, the foundation was forced to close in 2009 after it suffered huge losses from the uncovering of Madoff’s Ponzi scheme.
Later, it was revealed that Picower and his family had withdrawn $5.1 million from their various Madoff accounts between December 1995 and December 2008. In June 2009, a lawsuit was filed against Picower in the United States Bankruptcy Court seeking the return of $7.2 billion in profits. According to an MSNBC article published in June 2009, Picower and his wife were the biggest beneficiaries of Madoff’s scam.
A new filing was documented in November 2009 benefiting Picower. According to that, Picower had opened an account with Madoff in April 2006 by wiring a check for $125 million. The amount later grew to $164 million within two weeks. After five months, he withdrew his original $125 million and left $81 million in the account. In December 2010, a settlement of $7.2 billion was reached between Barbara Picower and Irving Picard. The settlement between the two was announced to repay losses in the Madoff fraud and resolve the Madoff trustee suit.
Jeffry Picower’s Wife & Personal Life
Jeffry Picower was married to his wife, Barbara Picower. Not much detail is available regarding his personal life. Jeffry was found dead at his Palm Beach house on October 25, 2009. His wife told dispatchers that she found him dead at their oceanfront estate at the bottom of the swimming pool. Picower was pronounced dead about 80 minutes later after he was rushed to Good Samaritan Medical Center.
After the autopsy was performed, The Medical Examiner’s Office of the Palm Beach County Medical determined that he suffered a massive heart attack while he was in the swimming pool which resulted in an accidental drowning. After his demise, Barbara resumed philanthropic activities by setting up a new foundation named the JPB Foundation. Barbara reportedly established the foundation with a $100 million endowment which had more than $3.7 billion in total assets in 2018. The foundation was also the 24th largest foundation by asset size in U. S.
Jeffry Picower Net Worth
Jeffry Picower had earned a total net worth of around $1 billion before he died on October 25, 2009. He was listed as one of the 400 richest people in U. S. by Forbes Magazine in 2009. Picower was listed at no.371 place in the Forbes list with a total net worth value of $1 billion. However, the magazine later acknowledged that the billionaire was likely worth billions more.
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