10 Things You Didn’t Know About Frank Lowy

Frank Lowy is a prominent Australian businessman and philanthropist who is widely known for co-founding the global shopping center giant, Westfield Corporation. While many people are familiar with his business achievements, there are several interesting facts about Frank Lowy that are not widely known. In this article, we will delve into 10 things you may not know about this remarkable businessman.

1. Holocaust Survivor

Before becoming a successful entrepreneur, Frank Lowy endured a tumultuous childhood. He was born in 1930 in what was then Czechoslovakia. As World War II erupted, Lowy and his family were forced to flee their hometown to avoid persecution from the Nazis. Spending several years in hiding, they eventually reunited and survived the Holocaust, even narrowly escaping execution at the hands of the Gestapo.

2. Journey to Australia

After the war, Lowy and his family embarked on a journey to Australia, where they sought to rebuild their lives. Arriving in the land Down Under in 1952, Lowy took on a range of odd jobs including delivering bread and working as a cleaner while learning English. With determination and a strong work ethic, he began to pave the path to success.

3. Co-Founder of Westfield Corporation

Frank Lowy, together with his business partner and fellow Holocaust survivor, John Saunders, founded Westfield Development Corporation in 1960. The company started with a single shopping center in Sydney, Australia, and eventually expanded to become one of the largest developers and operators of shopping centers in the world. Westfield Corporation was later sold to French commercial property company Unibail-Rodamco in 2018.

4. Soccer Enthusiast and Ownership of Football Clubs

Aside from his business ventures, Frank Lowy has a deep passion for soccer. He served as the Chairman of the Football Federation Australia from 2003 to 2015 and played a crucial role in the development of the sport in the country. Lowy also became the owner and chairman of football clubs in Australia and the United States, including the Sydney FC and the New York Cosmos.

5. Philanthropic Endeavors

Frank Lowy is renowned for his generous contributions to various philanthropic causes. He established the Lowy Institute for International Policy, a think tank that focuses on international relations and security, in 2003. Additionally, he made substantial donations to organizations such as the United Israel Appeal and the Museum of Jewish Heritage. Lowy’s philanthropic efforts have made a significant impact both locally and globally.

6. Australian Honors and Recognition

In recognition of his exceptional contributions to business and society, Frank Lowy has been honored with numerous awards and titles. He was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2000 and later became an Officer of the French Legion of Honor. Lowy’s achievements have not only earned him accolades but have also solidified his status as a respected figure in both Australia and the international business community.

7. Passion for Aviation

Frank Lowy has harbored a lifelong fascination with aviation. In 1966, he purchased a Boeing 707 jet, which he used for both personal and business travel. Additionally, he co-founded and served as the chairman of the Australian airline, Polynesian Blue. Lowy’s love for aviation showcases his diverse interests beyond the world of business.

8. Personal Net Worth

As of 2021, Frank Lowy has an estimated net worth of over $10 billion. His success in the real estate and shopping center industry, particularly through Westfield Corporation, has earned him substantial wealth. However, Lowy’s focus remains on investing in charitable causes and supporting his family rather than personal extravagance.

9. Sporting Legacy

Besides his involvement in soccer, Frank Lowy has left a lasting impact on the world of sports in other ways. Under his leadership, Westfield sponsored the Australian Olympic team for four consecutive Olympic Games from 1996 to 2008. This support increased the visibility and success of Australian athletes on the global stage, leaving a sporting legacy that continues to inspire.

10. Retirement and Succession

In 2010, Frank Lowy stepped down as the Chairman of Westfield Corporation but remained actively involved in the company’s affairs. His sons, Peter and Steven, have taken over the reins of the company, ensuring that the Lowy legacy lives on. Frank Lowy’s retirement allowed him to focus more on his philanthropic endeavors and indulge in his love for art collecting.

Frank Lowy’s life and achievements are nothing short of extraordinary. From surviving the Holocaust to revolutionizing the shopping center industry and making a lasting impact through philanthropy, he has become an Australian icon. Through his inspiring journey, Lowy teaches us the importance of resilience, hard work, and giving back to society.

Useful Links:

Westfield Corporation Official Website

The Lowy Institute Official Website