December 27, 2005
Australian media mogul, and the nation’s richest man, has died: Kerry Packer was a young (by today’s standards) 68. And with him passes an era, one where mass media ruled.
I will hand it to the late Mr Packer as a man, and as a company head. He was a philanthropist, and he did right by a lot of people. From what I know, he did right by his family. I was always raised to believe that if your family is around you when you go, you’ve had a good life. And Packer had a good life. And the way his companies were run was successful in the twentieth century.
His son, James, will inherit the Packer empire, the third generation of the clan to be big media owners. One of the companies, Publishing and Broadcasting Ltd., has casino interests, too, which are more than contributing to its bottom line—and are occupying, I would say, more and more of its time.
Its diversiﬁcation is a shrewd move, and a useful legacy for the third generation. The senior Packer did a wise thing not just to put succession in place, but to diversify into an area where the junior has continued to shine. And James Packer has a knack of picking competent, board-pleasing people to run family interests.
I wish the Packer family well as it mourns, and I wish James Packer well as his father’s successor.
The news coincides with the early death of Italian–American actor Vincent Schiavelli, aged 57. It has been a big day for the obits. permalink
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