pxdrive.com -> Robert L. Johnson
|Robert L. Johnson Page: 1|
Businessman and the founder of Black Entertainment Television (BET), and was its chairman and chief executive officer, Robert L. Johnson pictures (pic) and photo gallery.
Born: April 8, 1946 Hickory, Mississippi, USA.
Robert L. Johnson biography (bio):
Robert L. Johnson is an American businessman and the founder of Black Entertainment Television (BET), and was its chairman and chief executive officer. Johnson is also the owner of the Charlotte Bobcats, a National Basketball Association franchise and is the only billionaire black man in the world, according to Forbes magazine (not counting Afro-multiracial billionaires who are not of predominantly sub-Saharan ancestry).
Johnson was born in Hickory, Mississippi, but spent almost all of his childhood in Freeport, Illinois. He was the ninth of 10 children born to Edna Johnson and Archie Johnson studied history at the University of Illinois and graduated in 1968 with a bachelor's degree. While at the University of Illinois, Johnson was a member of the Beta chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity. He earned a master's degree in International Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University in 1972. He is now the father of two children. His daughter, Paige Johnson, competes in horse riding events.
Black Entertainment Television:
In 1979, he left NCTA to create Black Entertainment Television, the first cable television network aimed at African Americans. It was launched in January 1980 and broadcasting for two hours a week.
Eleven years later, BET became the first black-controlled company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. BET reaches more than 65 million U.S. homes and expanded into other BET-related television channels that make up the BET Networks: BETJ, and digital cable channels BET Hip-Hop and BET Gospel.
In 1998, Johnson took the company private, buying back all of its publicly traded stock. In 1999, Viacom bought BET for $3 billion. Johnson's 63% stake made him worth over a billion dollars after taxes making him the richest African-American on the planet until surrendering the title to Oprah Winfrey when wife Sheila claimed much of his billion in divorce. Johnson continued to be the company's chairman and CEO for six years. In 2005, Johnson turned over the titles of President and Chief Operating Officer of BET to Debra L. Lee, a former BET vice president.
Johnson also serves on the boards of US Airways, General Mills and Hilton Hotels.He is also the first African American to be the principal owner of a North American major-league sports franchise; he leads the group that acquired the Charlotte Bobcats NBA expansion franchise, which began play in the fall of 2004. Until December 2006, he also owned the Charlotte Sting of the WNBA, which put him in a situation that may be unmatched in sports history: His ex-wife Sheila Johnson is the president of the Washington Mystics, a team in the same division as her ex's. However, he gave up his ownership of the Sting; when the WNBA was unable to find a buyer, the team folded on January 3, 2007. Johnson is also the founder and Chairman of RLJ Companies Inc.
In late 2006, Johnson founded Our Stories Films, a Los Angeles-based film company. His partner is Harvey Weinstein, whose own new enterprise, the Weinstein Company, will serve as his distributor. JPMorgan Chase has sunk $175 million into Our Stories. His private equity fund is financed partly by the Washington-based Carlyle Group, while his hedge fund has backing from Deutsche Bank.