Sam Zell

"I've spent
my whole life testing my limits."


Chairman of Everything, CEO of Nothing

Sam was a visionary and macro strategist for a broad network of companies. For more than 50 years, he identified and applied fundamental principles that transcend industries, geographies, and economies. Sam founded or built hundreds of companies and created thousands of jobs.

“I spend almost my entire day listening. I ask questions, I probe, I raise possibilities.”

Sam's Career

Am I Being Too Subtle?

Sam often communicated through storytelling — from fictional parodies to custom-designed music boxes, amusing t-shirts, cartoons and indescribable events. His signature creative expressions was his calling card.

Original Thinking

“I am part of the great American dream, an entrepreneurial movement like none other in the world.”


Sam was a pioneer in entrepreneurship education. His sponsorship began in 1981 at the University of Michigan with a national contest inviting any academic in any field to write a syllabus for a course on the topic. Today there is a global network of graduates from his programs in the U.S. and Israel.

Accelerating Entrepreneurship

Outside Looking In

The CNBC Squawk Box Set
Sam Zell 1941 – 2023
May 18, 2023 It is with great sadness that we announce that Sam Zell, chairman of Equity Group Investments, Equity LifeStyle Properties, Equity Residential, and Equity Commonwealth, died today at home due to complications from a recent illness. The family of Equity companies mourns his loss.
Equity Group Investments Partners with East Coast Warehouse
Business Wire, January 27, 2022 Equity Group Investments, Sam Zell’s private investment firm, today announced an investment in East Coast Warehouse, a leading provider of temperature-controlled logistics to the food and beverage industry.