Alec Gores

Last updated
Alec Gores
Born1953 (age 6970)
Nazareth, Israel
NationalityAmerican, Israeli
Alma mater Western Michigan University
Spouse(s)Lisa (div.)
Kelly Noonan (m. 2016)
Family Tom Gores (brother)
Sam Gores (brother)

Alec E. Gores (born 1953) is an American billionaire businessman who began making his fortune through leveraged buyouts of technology firms at the firm The Gores Group. He has also been, instrumental in popularizing SPACs, beginning in the mid-2010s. [1]


Early life

Alec Gores was born in 1953 in Nazareth, Israel, from a Catholic family, the son of a Greek father and a Lebanese mother. [2] [3] His family of eight moved to Flint, Michigan in November 1968 when he was 15 years old with just $40 and two suitcases to their name. He began working the very next day at his uncle's store in Flint, bagging groceries for 25 cents an hour. He attended Genesee High School in Genesee, Michigan. He obtained a degree in computer science from Western Michigan University, and was the first in his family to attend college. [4] [5] He is the older brother of Tom Gores, founder of Platinum Equity, [6] [7] and Sam Gores, the head of Paradigm Talent Agency. [8]


Upon graduating college, Gores landed a position at General Motors. Within six months, he decided he couldn’t work in a large corporation and quit, striking out on his own to build a company that bought and distributed computers. [9] With the help of his father’s last $8,000, Gores founded Executive Business Systems in 1978, selling computers out of his parents' basement. [4] By 1986 the company employed over 200 people and was acquired by CONTEL for approximately $2 million. [10]

Following the acquisition, Gores began acquiring and operating non-core businesses from major corporations. He eventually founded The Gores Group, a private equity firm in 1987 and since then has acquired or invested in over 130 companies spanning 35 years. [11] Gores pioneered the operational approach to private equity investing, initially deploying his own personal capital, followed by ~$4 billion of institutional capital across multiple investment vehicles. Marquee investments during this time included the carve-out of The Learning Company from Mattel; [12] Verifone from HP; Therakos from Johnson & Johnson; Lineage, which ultimately sold to GE; and Sagemcom, which evolved into one of France’s premier technology companies. [13]

Gores and his brother Tom have been involved in a number of deals together including the 2011 acquisition of Alliance Entertainment, which distributes DVDs, CDs and video games to stores such as Barnes & Noble, and Target. [14]

In 2020, Forbes ranked Gores No. 391 on the Forbes 400 list of America's wealthiest people. [15] He was selected as 2021 Business Person of the Year by LA Business Journal. [16] Gores has also been profiled in TheWall Street Journal. [1]


Beginning in 2015, Gores launched a new platform specializing in Special Purpose Acquisition Companies (SPACs), launching Gores Holdings, [13] and Gores and The Gores Group are credited with starting the SPAC revival with their first SPAC transaction in Hostess. [17] Gores is considered one of the most prolific investors in the SPAC space, having created 13 SPACs, more than any other single investor, [1] and The Gores Group is considered a premier SPAC sponsor. [18] [19] [20]

Gores has announced or completed more than seven SPAC transactions to date representing over $36 billion in transaction value. [21]

Gores launched Gores Holdings VII and Gores Holdings VIII in 2021, [33] and publicly filed for Gores Technology Partners and Gores Technology Partners II, [34] as well as Gores Guggenheim, [35] the latter in partnership with Guggenheim Partners.

Personal life

As of 2009, Gores is a practicing Catholic. [36]

Gores has six children. He is married to Kelly Noonan-Gores, producer and director of the award-winning documentary HEAL. [37] He has a former wife, Lisa. [38]

See also

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  2. "Tom Gores: Balancing Family, Business, and the Detroit Pistons". CSQ Magazine. 9 July 2011.
  3. "Letters". San Diego Reader. 2009-05-20. Retrieved 2011-09-25. For the record, my mother is of Lebanese descent, and my father was of Greek descent. We were raised and are still practicing Catholics
  4. 1 2 "Bagging Groceries To Bagging Billions: How Immigrant Alec Gores Achieved The American Dream". Forbes.
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  15. "THE RICHEST PEOPLE IN AMERICA (Forbes 400 list)". Retrieved 2020-09-18.
  16. "Businessperson of the Year: Alec Gores Still Leads the SPAC Pack". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  17. "Hostess Brands Returns to Wall Street". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  18. "Billionaire Gores backs Matterport listing with $2.9 bln blank-check deal". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  19. "Gores-backed SPACs to raise $640 million through IPOs". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  20. "Alec Gores SPAC Deal Turns $25,000 Into $80 Million in Months". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  21. "Ardagh Metal Packaging to Combine With Gores Holdings V and List on NYSE". 23 February 2021. Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  22. "Mesa tech company goes public in $2.4 billion reverse merger". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  23. "Gores Holdings III Takes PAE Public After Deal Completion; John Heller Quoted". 11 February 2020. Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  24. "Founder, funder explain deal behind Luminar's $8B 'blank check' market debut (Video)". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  25. "United Wholesale Mortgage Goes Public in Biggest SPAC Deal Ever". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  26. "The private equity shop that took Twinkies public leads the largest SPAC merger yet". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
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  28. "Ardagh Metal Packaging to Go Public Through $8.5 Billion PE-Backed SPAC Deal". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  29. "Ardagh Metal Packaging S.A. and Gores Holdings V Announce Completion of Business Combination" (PDF).
  30. "Lodging Firm Sonder Agrees to $2.2 Billion Gores SPAC Merger". Retrieved 2021-05-12.
  31. Hawkins, Andrew J. (September 27, 2021). "Electric car company Polestar is going public via SPAC". The Verge . Retrieved September 27, 2021.
  32. "Footprint Agrees to $1.6 Billion Gores SPAC Deal as Koch Invests". Bloomberg News . 14 December 2021. Retrieved 2021-12-14.
  33. "The Gores Group launches yet another SPAC". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  34. "The Gores Group's second tech SPAC Gores Technology Partners II files for a $400 million IPO". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  35. "UPDATE 1-Alec Gores, Guggenheim-backed SPAC seeks to raise $750 million via IPO". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  36. "Letters". San Diego Reader. 2009-05-20. Retrieved 2011-09-25. For the record, my mother is of Lebanese descent, and my father was of Greek descent. We were raised and are still practicing Catholics
  37. "HEAL (2017): A Feature Documentary Film". Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  38. Mark David (April 23, 2007). "Do You Know Who Lisa Gores Is?". Variety. Retrieved December 6, 2014.