Entrepreneur came from nothing. Grew up in Portland, Oregon during Depression; sold magazines, lemonade for change. Studied physics at UCLA....
Entrepreneur came from nothing. Grew up in Portland, Oregon during Depression; sold magazines, lemonade for change. Studied physics at UCLA. Founded aerospace companies Spectrolab in 1956 and Heliotek 4 years later; both sold to Textron (now owned by General Motors). Continued to invest in biomed firms. Helped fund MiniMed (insulin pumps), Advanced Bionics (cochlear implants), Pacesetter Systems (rechargeable pacemakers). Sold MiniMed to Medtronic for $3.7 billion in 2001. Recently reacquired Advanced Bionics after selling to Boston Scientific 2004; massive legal squabble finally over. Has invested $566 million in MannKind, a company developing inhaled insulin. Also has stakes in Stellar Microelectronics and Bioness. Donated $100 million to USC 1998, another $100 million to Purdue U. last year. Continues to search for universities to endow that will allow him to have control over how funds are used.