The Billionaire Behind Trump’s $175 Million Bond Post

  • Billionaire Don Hankey’s company has taken out a $175 million appeal bond for Donald Trump.
  • Hankey’s net worth is estimated at $7.4 billion and he oversees a $22.5 billion automotive empire.
  • Hankey is known for helping finance “The One” Bel Air mansion, which failed at auction.

Billionaire Don Hankey arrived Monday and posted a $175 million appeal bond for Donald Trump, saving the former president from getting his assets back. sold under him while he appeals his civil fraud case.

The 80-year-old oversees the Hankey Group, which employs more than 3,400 people and has assets worth about $22.5 billion, according to Forbes. The empire consists of eight companies from the automotive, financial, technology, real estate and insurance sectors.

Hankey’s Knight Specialty Insurance provided Trump’s bond on Monday, three days before the deadline.

This isn’t the first time Hankey has been financially linked to an entity that helped get Trump out of a potential bind, although the businessman told Bloomberg he didn’t do so. for political reasons.

“Yes, I’ve voted for him in the past, but this is a trade deal and that’s what we’re doing,” Hankey said in an interview with Bloomberg about the $175 million bond. of dollars. “I have never met Donald Trump or spoken to him on the phone.”

Hankey told the publication that he also invested in Axos Bank, which refinanced Trump Tower in 2022 for $100 million after the previous loan for that amount was placed on a debt watch list – but that his investment in Axos Bank had nothing to do with Trump’s. bind. Axos Bank CEO Greg Garrabrants has already donated about $50,000 to Republican campaigns since 2012, including $9,600 to support Trump, according to federal election records.

Hankey’s net worth is estimated at $7.4 billion, according to Forbes — and it’s nearly doubled in the past three years.

Hankey grew up as a worker, washing and polishing cars, then took a job as a salesman at his father’s Ford dealership, which he fully acquired in 1972 and from which he built his empire, Bloomberg reported.

Dubbed the “little-known king of subprime auto loans” in his Forbes profile, his largest company, Westlake Financial Services, operates as a subprime financing company and is worth $16.8 billion in assets, according to the website from the Hankey group. Westlake works with car dealerships across the country to offer loans to people with poor or no credit.

The group also owns a real estate company, Hankey Investment Company LP. The company owns 488,343 square feet of commercial properties and 12 million square feet of urban development land in Southern California, according to the Hankey Group website.

The billionaire made a splash two years ago when he invested $82.5 in financing into the Bel Air megamansion “The One,” developed by Nile Niami. The 105,000 square foot property includes 21 bedrooms and 42 full bathrooms. It also includes a 4,000-square-foot guesthouse and a long list of luxury amenities, including several infinity pools, a nightclub, a spa, a beauty salon, a bowling alley and a movie theater.

Aerial view of the Bel Air neighborhood in Los Angeles with mansions and a golf course.

An aerial view of the Bel Air neighborhood of Los Angeles with mansions and a golf course.

David Sucsy/Getty

However, the lack of interest in the property led to financial problems for its developer, Nial Niami’s Crestlloyd, who filed for bankruptcy protection. The mansion ended up being sold at auction for less than half of its estimated value of $500 million.

Hankey was involved in some of the legal challenges over ownership of the property, but said he recouped all of his capital commitments after selling the property, the Los Angeles Business Journal reported.

“The One” in Bel Air is a 105,000 square foot mansion.

Allen J. Schaben/Getty

Hankey attended the University of Southern California and currently resides in Malibu.

He has been married for 40 years to Debbie Hankey and has four children, according to Forbes.


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