Speaker

Frank Stronach,
The Stronach Group


Frank Stronach is the founder and Honorary Chairman of Magna International Inc., the world’s most diversified automotive supplier, and founder and Honorary Chairman of The Stronach Group, North America’s leading Thoroughbred racetrack operator and one of the world's largest suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering systems, technologies and services.

Mr. Stronach founded Magna in 1957 as a one-man tool and die shop in a rented garage. The Company today employs 131,000 people in 313 manufacturing operations and 84 product development and engineering centers in 28 countries. Magna manufactures a wide range of vehicle systems, including: automotive interior systems; seating systems; closure systems; body and chassis systems; vision systems; electronic systems; exterior systems; powertrain systems; closure and roof systems; as well as complete vehicle engineering and contract manufacturing. Magna had sales in 2014 of US $36.6 billion and is listed and traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange in Canada (MG) and the New York Stock Exchange in the US (MGA). Mr. Stronach introduced his unique management philosophy, known as Fair Enterprise, to Magna in 1971. Fair Enterprise is based on a business Charter of Rights that predetermines the annual percentage of profits shared between employees, management, investors and society. These rights are enshrined in a governing Corporate Constitution.

The Stronach Group owns and operates some of the premier racetracks in the US, including Santa Anita Park, “The Great Race Place”; Pimlico Race Course, home of the legendary Preakness; Gulfstream Park, one of Florida's newest entertainment destination centers featuring a casino and outdoor retail village; Laurel Park; Golden Gate Fields; and Portland Meadows. The Stronach Group is the worldwide leader in wagering technology and a leading global supplier of pari-mutuel systems and services through its AmTote subsidiary. The Company is also a major producer and distributor of televised horseracing programming and a leading exporter of American horseracing to a global audience. The Stronach Group is a key player in the American horse industry, which contributes approximately $40 billion annually to the US economy, generates 1.4 million jobs, and helps with the preservation of green space and agricultural land.

Mr. Stronach is regarded as one of the world’s leading Thoroughbred owners and breeders and has bred and raced more than 225 individual stakes winners over the course of his career. Among his winners are: Awesome Again, the homebred victor in the 1998 Breeders’ Cup Classic and the richest Canadian-bred in history with earnings in excess of $4.3 million; Ghostzapper, sired by Awesome Again, winner of the 2004 Breeders’ Cup Classic and 2004 Horse of the Year; Ginger Punch, sired by Awesome Again, winner of the 2007 Breeders’ Cup Distaff and a 2007 Eclipse Award winner; Perfect Sting, 2000 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare turf champion; and Macho Uno, 2000 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile champion. In addition, two of his horses have won Triple Crown races: Red Bullet, winner of the 2000 Preakness Stakes; and Touch Gold (in partnership with Stonerside Stables), winner of the 1997 Belmont Stakes. He has won 12 Eclipse Awards, the highest Thoroughbred horse racing honor in the US, including the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Breeder a record eight times, and the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Owner on four separate occasions. He has received Canada’s Sovereign Award for Outstanding Breeder nine times and also captured the Sovereign Award for Outstanding Owner nine times.

In 2014, Frank Stronach launched a food company committed to raising and processing all-natural, premium-quality meats free of hormones and antibiotics. The Company is guided by the philosophy that farm animals should be raised in completely natural surroundings, free from cruelty, pain and stress. The cattle, pigs, chicken, turkey and lamb raised at Adena Ranch in Ocala, Florida roam freely outdoors on more than 90,000 acres of spacious pastures, forests and wide-open fields, with fresh spring-fed water and year-round Florida sunshine. The Company plans to open a chain of retail outlets in the US featuring all-natural meats and other healthy, nutritious foods.

Mr. Stronach has served on numerous corporate, government and university boards over the years and has provided assistance to a wide range of charitable and community service organizations. He is the recipient of numerous honorary degrees, including a Doctor of Philosophy from University of Haifa in Haifa, Israel; a Doctor of Laws from Cape Breton University in Sydney, Nova Scotia; a Doctor of Management from Kettering University in Flint, Michigan; a Doctor of Commerce from St. Mary's University in Halifax, Nova Scotia; a Doctor of Business Administration from Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario; and an Honorary Professorship from the Graz University of Technology in Graz, Austria.

Over the years, Mr. Stronach has received a number of awards for his achievements in business and philanthropy. In 1996, he was inducted into the Canadian Business Hall of Fame. He won the 1997 "Business Leader of the Year Award" from the Richard Ivey School of Business and earned the 1998 Entrepreneur of the Year Award" from the University of Michigan. In 1999 he was named a recipient of the Order of Canada and in 2000 he won the Ernst & Young "Entrepreneur of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award." In 2002, the Canadian Council for International Business named Mr. Stronach the “Canadian International Executive of the Year”, and in that same year he received the Gold Medal for meritorious service from the Republic of Austria. In 2004 he received the Yves Landry Foundation “Person of the Year” Award for his achievement in promoting technological education and technical skills training. In 2005 he received the B’nai Brith Canada Award of Merit for distinguished humanitarian service. He was inducted into the Canadian Manufacturing Hall of Fame in 2006, and in 2010 he received the Joseph Schumpeter Award for innovative achievements in economics, politics or business, and the Grand Decoration of Honor in Gold with Star, one of the highest civilian honours given by the Republic of Austria. In 2011, he was presented with the T. Patrick Boyle Founder’s Award, the highest honour bestowed by The Fraser Institute in recognition of excellence and accomplishment in the promotion of entrepreneurship, philanthropy and free-market ideas.

He is the author of The Magna Man, published in 2012, which tells the story of his life and business career.