As bids heat up for Disney’s Miramax Films, two elusive financiers, Tom Gores and Alec Gores, are muscling their way into the mix. They recently boosted their reported $550 million offer for the indie/art-house studio.
Considering the duo might beat the Weinstein brothers, the founders of Miramax who later sold the company to Disney (DIS), and who’ve entered a competing $600 million joint bid with Ron Burkle, it’s worth knowing more about them.
For starters, they’re filthy rich—Tom is No. 147 and Alec No. 220 on Forbes’ most wealthy Americans list. They’re also obscure. But The Wrap’s Brent Lang and Sharon Waxman have unearthed some interesting tidbits about them:
- They grew up poor in Flint, Mich., went to state schools, and worked their way up as computer and software salesmen, eventually splitting off to build up their own investment firms, Platinum Equity (Tom) and Gores Group (Alec).
- Last year, Tom’s Platinum Equity purchased the San Diego-Tribune and was also a contender for the Boston Globe; in 2001, Alec bought the Learning Company from Mattel and transformed it from distressed to success in 75 days.
- Gores Group owns the Westwood One radio station as well as Siemens Enterprise Communications.
- Both brothers previously each owned stakes in Lionsgate, “and Tom executive produced a number of low-budget, low-grossing films for Sony and Lionsgate, including ‘The Lost City,’ ‘Crossover’ and the notorious Lindsay Lohan bomb ‘I Know Who Killed Me.'”
- There’s also been some sibling rivalry: Alec once hired a notorious Hollywood P.I. to find out if his wife was cheating on him with Tom.
The Wrap’s Sources speculate that the brothers’ goal is “to build a major Hollywood presence.”
Will they succeed?
Hollywood insiders tell Reuters that the Weinstein-Burkle bid is still the strongest, but one source close to the deal said the Gores are “very much in the hunt.”
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