Bloomberg Billionaires Index

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# 159 Jim Davis $9.66B

Random fact: Founder William Riley was inspired by a chicken foot.

Overview

Davis is the chairman and majority owner of New Balance, a closely held athletic shoemaker with revenue of $4.5 billion in 2018. The Boston-based company manufactures or assembles more than 4 million pairs of shoes in the U.S. per year. It also produces a range of mens and womens sports wear.

As of :
Last change No change
YTD change +$2.75B ( +39.7%)
Industry Consumer
Biggest asset New Balance
Citizenship United States
Age 76
Wealth Self-made
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

Jim Davis's net worth of $9.66B can buy ...

0
troy ounces of gold
0
barrels of crude oil

... and is equivalent to ...

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of the GDP of the United States
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of the total wealth of the 500 richest people in the world
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of the top 100 U.S. college endowments
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of the top 200 U.S. executives’ total awarded compensation
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of U.S. existing home sales
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times the median U.S. household income

Latest News

Net Worth Summary

Cash
Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

Davis's fortune is derived from his control of New Balance. The company had revenue of $4.5 billion in 2018, according to a report by The Challenger Project. New Balance makes or assembles more than 4 million pairs of shoes in the U.S. per year, according to its website.

The company is valued using the average enterprise value-to-sales multiple of four publicly traded peer companies: Nike, Sketchers, Adidas and Puma.

Amy Dow, a spokeswoman for New Balance, confirmed in a 2018 email that Davis and his wife, Anne, are sole owners of the company. Jim Davis is attributed full ownership in this analysis to reflect his status as chairman.

Biography

Birthdate: 5/17/1943
Family: Married, 2 children
Education: Worcester Academy, Middlebury College

James S. Davis was born on May 17, 1943. He graduated with a degree in biology and chemistry from Middlebury College in 1966 before joining the New Balance Athletic Shoes company. He acquired it on the day of the 1972 Boston marathon and became its chairman and chief executive officer.

Founder William Riley, inspired by the three points of balance on a chicken's foot, started the New Balance Arch Company in 1906 and created new ways to provide arch supports for police officers and waiters in Boston. It made its first pair of running shoes 32 years later. It introduced the Trackster, the first running shoe available in different widths, with a ripple sole, in an effort to offer the best fitting shoe possible, in 1960.

When Davis purchased New Balance from Eleanor and Paul Kidd, it had six employees making 30 pairs a day. He built the company into a leading shoemaker, with five plants in the U.S., one in the U.K. and more than 5,000 employees worldwide. It had global sales of $3.3 billion in 2014.

The billionaire lives in Newton, Massachusetts with his wife Anne. They have a son, Chris, and a daughter, Kassia.

Milestones
  • 1906 William Riley starts the New Balance Arch Company in Boston.
  • 1938 New Balance makes its first pair of running shoes.
  • 1972 Acquires New Balance for $100,000.
  • 1976 Creates the New Balance 320 show model.
  • 1981 Establishes the New Balance Foundation.
  • 2001 Buys PF Flyers brand.
  • 2004 Purchases Warrior Lacrosse.
  • 2008 Opens Sports Research Lab.