John William Henry II (born September 13, 1949) is an American businessman and the founder of John W. Henry & Company, an investment management firm. He is the principal owner of Liverpool Football Club, the Boston Red Sox, The Boston Globe, and co-owner of RFK Racing. As of August 2023, Forbes estimated his net worth to be US$4 billion.
What is John Henry’s Net Worth?
John Henry is an American entrepreneur, businessman and investor and sports team owner who has a net worth of $ 4 billion. He is notable for owning the Boston Globe, the Boston Red Sox, the Liverpool F.C. and co-owning Roush Fenway Racing. He earned his first fortune trading agricultural futures. In 1981 he launched his own firm, John W. Henry and Company.
Henry, a former owner of the Florida Marlins, bought the Boston Red Sox in 2002 with the express goal of “breaking the Curse of the Bambino.” The Red Sox went on to win World Series titles in 2004, 2007, 2013 and 2018.
In October 2010 Henry’s Fenway Sports Group took over Liverpool F.C.
Henry was born on September 13, 1949, in Quincy, Illinois. His parents were soybean farmers, and he split his time growing up between Illinois and Arkansas. His asthmatic condition at the age of 15 prompted his family to move to Apple Valley, California. After he graduated from Victor Valley High School in Victorville, he attended Victor Valley College, then the University of California (at Riverside, Irvine, and Los Angeles), where he majored in philosophy but did not graduate — partly the result of performing on the road in two bands, Elysian Fields and Hillary.
Henry started trading corn and soybean futures to learn the basics of hedging the price risk of holding an inventory of these commodities, whether in storage or out in the field. In 1976, a commodities broker at Reynolds Securities asked him to advise other farmers, but he declined. After spending a summer in Norway with his first wife, Mai, Henry developed a mechanical trend following method for managing a futures trading account. He tested his trend-reversal method—which was never out of the market but always held a position (either long or short) in every one of the markets in the account’s “basket” of commodities—”using his own money” (in the words of his marketing literature of 1983). When that test proved successful, he founded John W. Henry & Company in 1981, opened a small office across the street from the airport in Irvine, California, and began marketing his management to the largest commodity brokerage firms in America. That proved so successful by 1983 that he moved to considerably larger quarters at Fashion Island in Newport Beach. In 1989, Henry moved to Westport, Connecticut. Two years later, Henry established a second office in Boca Raton.
Henry first got into the world of business when he began trading soybean and corn futures so he could understand the basics of price-risk hedging for holding these items in an inventory. Eventually, he devised a mechanical trend trading process for managing a futures trading account.
John W. Henry & Company
Having found success with his trend-reversal method, Henry founded his own investment management firm, John W. Henry & Company, in 1981 from a small office across the street from the airport in Irvine, California.
After successfully marketing himself to some of the country’s biggest commodity brokerage firms, Henry eventually moved to a bigger office space at Fashion Island in Newport Beach. He moved again in 1989 to Westport, Connecticut, and a couple years after that opened another office in Boca Raton, Florida.
John W. Henry & Company was falling on hard times by late 2012. The firm announced that it would cease managing clients’ money by the end of the year, as its total assets had decreased from $2.5 billion in 2006 to under $100 million in the span of six years.
Baseball Team Ownership
Thanks to the wealth he acquired as an investor, Henry began indulging in his love of baseball by venturing into team ownership. In 1989, he purchased his first team, the minor league Tucson Toros of the Pacific Coast League. Henry also had co-ownership of the West Palm Beach Tropics, a member of the Senior Professional Baseball Association that he had previously co-founded. Moving to the MLB, Henry bought a small portion of the New York Yankees in 1991. Later in the decade, he bought the Florida Marlins from Wayne Huizenga; a few years after that, Henry sold the Marlins to Jeffrey Loria.
In the predawn hours of August 3, 2013, both The Boston Globe and The New York Times carried stories on their web sites reporting that Henry had agreed to purchase the former along with the Telegram & Gazette newspaper of Worcester, Massachusetts, and related New England media properties for $70 million in cash from The New York Times Company, which had paid $1.1 billion for The Globe in 1993. The Globe‘s story described Henry as “a personally shy businessman with a history of bold bets.” The Times story quoted Times spokesperson Eileen Murphy as confirming the sale deal.
The stories noted that Henry had initially been among a group of partners who had joined in bidding on The Globe properties, but ended up agreeing to acquire them individually. However, The Times story reported him saying: “In coming days there will be announcements concerning those joining me in this community commitment and effort.”
After the announcement, the ownership of The San Diego Union-Tribune (then known as “U-T San Diego”) alleged that it had outbid Henry for The Globe but that the management of The Times Company had not fairly handled the process, to the detriment of Times Company shareholders.
In 2014, Henry sold the Worcester Telegram & Gazette to Halifax Media Group, which had previously purchased 16 former New York Times Company newspapers in 2011.
In popular culture
Henry was briefly portrayed by Arliss Howard in the 2011 film Moneyball, which follows Oakland Athletics general manager Billy Beane and his quest to build a winning team in 2002. Towards the end of the film, Beane travels to Boston’s Fenway Park where he meets with Henry, who wants Beane to become the new GM of the Red Sox. The film notes that Beane turned down a five-year, $12.5 million contract with Boston and returned to Oakland, but adds that the Red Sox, despite failing to hire Beane, did implement many of his “Moneyball” ideas and would go on to win the 2004 World Series, marking the first Red Sox championship in 86 years.
Harvard Book Store
In December 2021, Henry became an investor and owner of the independent Harvard Book Store in Cambridge, Massachusetts. This was announced by The Boston Globe & Harvard Book Store‘s own website, amongst other publications. The Harvard Book Store took over the lease of the former Barnes & Noble in Prudential Center in 2022
In 1991 John paid $650 thousand for a plot of 6.4-acre land in Boca Raton, Florida. He proceeded to custom build what became a nearly 28,000 square-foot palatial mansion with 7 bedrooms and 19 bathrooms.
John listed the home for sale for the first time in November 2018 for $25 million. He lowered the price in March 2019 to $15 million but ultimately removed the property from the market.