10 Things You Didn’t Know About Mitchell Goldhar

In the world of Canadian real estate, none stands out more boldly than the self-made billionaire and property tycoon, Mitchell Goldhar. Goldhar is the founder of Smartcentres Real Estate Investment Trust, known for developing large portions of the retail landscape across Canada. Yet, there’s more to Goldhar’s success than meets the eye. Here are 10 surprising facts you didn’t know about him.

1. Early Entrepreneurial Sparks

Goldhar’s entrepreneurial drive was present from a young age. He started working at his father’s apparel business helping to expand it while still in his teens. Years later, the experiences he gained laid down the foundation for his large scale entrepreneurial ventures.

He didn’t just jump into real estate. Goldhar worked his way up from small ventures, gradually building on his success until his empire expanded across Canada. His approach is a vivid illustration that determined and continuous effort can eventually reap rich rewards.

2. Inspiration from Walmart

In the early 90s, Goldhar was fascinated by Walmart’s business model. He believed that the giant retail model could work in Canada and decided to introduce it. He traveled to Arkansas to persuade the retail giant about his vision for the Canadian market.

His determination paid off when he struck a landmark deal in 1994. This turned out to be the foreground for the establishment of his real estate empire. The deal involved the development of Walmart stores across Canada through his company, SmartCentres.

3. Adjunct Professor at University of Toronto

Despite his extremely busy schedule, Goldhar still finds time to spend in academia. He is an Adjunct Professor of Real Estate Finance at the University of Toronto, where he actively participates in the education of the next generation of professionals.

Goldhar often mentors University of Toronto students offering them invaluable advice drawn from his long and successful entrepreneurial career. It’s not every day students get to learn real estate finance from a self-made billionaire.

4. Soccer Enthusiast

Beyond his business interests, Goldhar is a passionate soccer enthusiast. He once owned Maccabi Tel Aviv, a football Club in Israel. His interest in soccer shows his dedication to sports and acknowledges the important role it plays in society.

Through his ownership, he was able to create an effective model for running the club that involved splitting operational costs with fans and other shareholders. This not only helped manage the financial health of the club but also deepened fan engagement and loyalty.

5. Philanthropy

Goldhar is not just about making profit; he believes in giving back too. He has donated millions to various causes including health, education, and community initiatives. His generosity has significantly impacted many lives and continues to contribute to society.

He once donated $10 million to Ryerson University’s Faculty of Communication and Design, helping transform the learning environment for students. His philanthropic endeavors reveal a deeply caring individual behind the successful businessman persona.

6. Loves his Privacy

Despite being a high-achieving business tycoon, Goldhar is a private individual. He does not seek the spotlight and prefers to maintain a low-key lifestyle. He likes to keep his personal life separate from his business ventures.

Goldhar seldom makes appearances at industry events or in the media. His approach to maintaining privacy underscores his belief that one does not need to be constantly in the public eye to be successful.

7. Battle with Adidas

Goldhar had a lengthy legal battle with Adidas over his quest to patent a shoe technology. This legal pursuit shows his determination to protect his business principles, no matter the opponent or obstacle.

Eventually, he was victorious after a seven-year long battle. This underscores his resilience and ability to stand up for what he believes in, a quality that is central to his success.

8. He’s a Self-Made Billionaire

Goldhar does not hail from a family of billionaires but he has made it to the billionaire club through his own efforts. His journey from a middle-class family to prominence in the real estate industry is an inspiring story of determination and tenacity.

His success shows that with a clear vision, hard work, and an unyielding drive, anyone can transform their dreams into reality. These ideals make Goldhar a model worth looking up to for young entrepreneurs.

9. Loves Art

Besides soccer and business, Goldhar is passionate about art. He has an impressive art collection that includes works from notable artists. His love for art is reflected in his company’s head office where his collections are displayed.

Through this, Goldhar has not only supported artists but also provided an inspirational environment for his employees. His love for art enables him to view the world in a different lens, further enriching his life experience.

10. Built his Business Empire from Scratch

Goldhar did not inherit a readymade business empire. He created his own empire from the ground up, starting with small businesses and eventually growing to develop properties housing some of the largest retail stores in Canada.

His journey is a testament to his hard work, unrivaled determination, and exceptional business acumen. As such, Goldhar’s story is one of an underdog who rises through ranks to build an empire, proving that success is indeed the result of perseverance.

Regardless of your interests or career, the story of Mitchell Goldhar serves as a great source of inspiration. There is so much more to learn about this self-made billionaire and the various impacts he has made both in the business world and the society at large.

Learn More About Mitchell Goldhar’s SmartCentres Mitchell Goldhar at University of Toronto Forbes: Mitchell Goldhar LinkedIn