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Today, Governor Bruce Rauner called out JB Pritzker’s spectacularly bad business record and questioned his taxes. When asked by reporters why JB Pritzker only reported $15 million in income despite his $3.4 billion net worth, Governor Rauner responded by saying “he has to be the worst investor on the planet.”
Here’s a history lesson: In 1998, JB Pritzker started New World Ventures. By 2003, that fund had lost 90% of its value.
In 1999, JB Pritzker started William Blair New World Ventures with $80 million in investments. By 2003, Pritzker returned only half that money ($40 million) to investors after the fund produced poor returns.
(“Divine Considering Chapter 11; Pritzker’s New World Ventures Gives Back Funds,” Chicago Tribune, 2/19/03)
Governor Rauner then followed up by stating that either Pritzker is the worst investor on the planet or that he’s avoiding taxes.
This seems to be a Pritzker family tradition. Just check out Rich Miller’s column from over the weekend: “The Pritzker family all but invented off-shore trusts. ‘No family in the U.S. can copy the Pritzkers in using offshore entities to gain tax advantages,’ claimed Forbes magazine back in 2003.”
At a time when Illinois families are paying higher taxes, JB Pritzker’s response was flippant at best and didn’t shed any light on the truth. It’s time for JB Pritzker to come clean about his trusts.