Ken Griffin sat in his Harvard dorm room in 1987, cradling a personal computer, and a dream. Further supplied with a phone, a fax machine, and $265,000, he hoped to establish a thriving investment firm. Through hard work and dedication, the ambitious young man raised close to a million dollars in his first year alone. That caught the attention of hedge-fund pioneer, Frank Meyer, co-founder of the Chicago-based Glenwood Partners. Griffin’s talents continued to grow, and in 1990, he was able to found what would eventually become Citadel Group.
Griffin’s firm rapidly gained a reputation for exceptional performance and outstanding service. It quickly diversified, entering markets around the world, and adopting the Citadel name to signify strength and commitment. By 1998, Citadel was in a solid position, with a billion dollars in investment capital, and a growing team. The firm received the Relative Value/Arbitrage Award, and positioned itself to explore investments in energy.
In 2001, Citadel acquired some of the brightest minds in energy, and developed a commodities business that includes natural gas, crude oil, and other refined products. It entered the world of automated trading a year later, and soon managed over ten billion dollars. This was followed by an expansion into the Chinese market, and another defining moment of recognition. Institutional Investor’s Alpha created the Hedge Fund Hall of Fame, naming Citadel CEO, Ken Griffin, among its initial inductees.
Citadel Group weathered the 2008 financial crisis with its usual combination of hard work and innovation. Recovering its losses in 2012, the Group set to work helping to stabilize the markets. It informed decisions that led to new rules and stronger safeguards designed for an era of automated trading. By 2015, Citadel’s investment capital had grown to $26 billion, and the group was consistently delivering high risk-adjusted returns for its investors.
The group is currently comprised of Citadel, an alternative asset manager that leads the industry, Citadel Securities, one of the leading providers of liquidity in American capital markets, and Citadel Technology, a solutions provider for investment management technology. Citadel Group boasts over 1,250 team members throughout the world.
Kenneth Griffin, once an aspiring Harvard student, is now the CEO of a thriving enterprise. But his wealth has not made him forget the needs of others. He actively supports various educational causes. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Chicago Public Education Fund, and has contributed generously to two of America’s finest universities. In addition, he has supported Laurie Children’s Hospital, and The Art Institute.
Citadel is a global financial leader in relentless pursuit of opportunity. It has enriched millions of lives, and stabilized the global markets. From that day in 1987, when Ken Griffin made his first phone call, Citadel has stood for consistent excellence. The group has performed beyond all expectations for its investors, and with Griffin at the helm, it will continue to do so.