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Real Estate / Mansions

An Eccentric L.A. Billionaire Stages a Texas Takeover

A $725 Million Mega Ranch Is His Latest Splurge

BY // 02.12.16

The eccentric billionaire who conquered Los Angeles is moving on to Texas. Stan Kroenke — who pulled off the $3 billion-plus deal that no one else could to bring NFL football back to Tinseltown — has bought the historic Texas mega ranch listed for a whopping $725 million.

Kroenke now owns L.A.’s NFL team and one of the most storied soccer teams in the world (Arsenal), as well as some other more “minor” professional sports franchises, including the Denver Nuggets and Colorado Avalanche, but this Texas ranch still clearly becomes one of his most impressive possessions of all.

PaperCity first told you about the W.T. Waggoner Estate Ranch this past July — and it fits perfectly into Kroenke’s quest to possess the best things in the world. In fact, Kroenke could have decided to buy this near billion-dollar ranch instead of a country. After all, it’s bigger than some nations.

At 510,527 acres, it’s larger than New York City and Los Angeles combined. There are 58 houses, three lakes and 1,000 working oil wells scattered across the property, which has land in six different North Texas counties. Kroenke, who knows a thing or two about taking over something the public cares deeply about, seems to grasp the significance of his latest buy beyond merely the scope of it.

“This is an incredible opportunity and an even greater responsibility,” the famously reclusive Kroenke says in a statement. “We are honored to assume ownership of the Waggoner — a true Texas and American landmark — and are deeply committed to continuing the proud legacy of W.T. “Tom” Waggoner, his family and his descendants.”

The ranch’s history dates back 166 years. There are even tombstones of some famous cowboys on the spread. In 2014, a judge ordered that the ranch be sold after warring factions of the Waggoner family couldn’t agree on what to do with the property after two decades of legal battles.

Bernard Uechtritz — the Dallas-based broker who handled the sale — says that a dozen serious buyers showed interest in the property, but insists there was a commitment to selecting a buyer who would keep the ranch operating and honor the place’s history.

The people of St. Louis might quibble with the idea of Kroenke being a great caretaker, but there are few men on the planet who can afford a $725 million ranch. Kroenke clearly sees upside in this side project.

There’s no question Kroenke is something of a ranch man. He owns giant ranches in Montana, Wyoming, Arizona and British Columbia. Now, he owns the biggest — and most expensive — ranch in the world.

 

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