Ken Griffin buys copy of US constitution after bidding war with crypto traders

Ken Griffin, the billionaire founding father of the hedge fund Citadel, was revealed on Friday as the customer of a uncommon first printing of the US structure, beating out an impromptu collective of cryptocurrency merchants with a $43.2m cost.

The doc was the topic of an almost eight-minute public sale on Thursday at Sotheby’s in New York, the place Griffin squared off with greater than 17,000 cryptocurrency merchants who had banded collectively in an try to fund a crowdsourced buy.

The successful worth represented a document for a manuscript or e book bought at public sale, based on Sotheby’s. It’s one among 11 recognized copies of the 234-year-old doc and the one one that’s privately owned.

“The US structure is a sacred doc that enshrines the rights of each American and all those that aspire to be,” Griffin stated.

Griffin stated he would mortgage the structure to the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Artwork, which was inbuilt 2011 by Alice Walton, an inheritor to the Walmart fortune. The free museum’s location in Bentonville, Arkansas, can be the headquarters of the US retailer.

“I intend to make sure that this copy of our structure will likely be obtainable for all Individuals and guests to view and recognize in our museums and different public areas,” he stated.

Griffin paid greater than double the presale estimate of $15m to $20m for the structure, beating out a bunch known as “ConstitutionDAO”, the cryptocurrency collective that organised on-line to bid for the doc. The marketing campaign, launched on November 11, took in a median cryptocurrency donation of $206 from members, based on a message after the loss.

“We memed this into actuality. We made historical past,” the collective wrote on Twitter after the public sale.

Citadel, based mostly in Chicago, is without doubt one of the world’s largest hedge funds with about $34bn in belongings below administration. Griffin additionally based the most important equities market maker within the US, often known as Citadel Securities.

Citadel Securities’ central position in US equities markets put it into the highlight throughout frenzied buying and selling within the shares of GameStop earlier this yr. Griffin was known as to testify earlier than Congress on the upheaval.

Griffin, whose private fortune Forbes estimated to be round $21bn, has turn out to be an avid collector of high-profile artworks. He beforehand bought a Jean-Michel Basquiat for $100m final yr and spent a record-setting $300m on a Willem de Kooning in 2015.

He’s additionally outspoken in American politics, and a high donor to Republican candidates.

On a panel earlier this month, Griffin introduced his intention to go “all in” to help a candidate who might defeat the present Democratic governor of his residence state of Illinois, fellow billionaire JB Pritzker, in 2022.

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