Ricardo B. Salinas

Founder and Chairman, Grupo Salinas

Ricardo B. Salinas is one of Latin America’s leading businessmen and a man convinced of the potential of 21st century Mexico as a country capable of determining its own destiny and that firmly struggles to decide what it best needs, openly and democratically, spurred by the strength of its most value capital resource, the talent of its people. Distinguished by his success in his business endeavors and his innovative capacity, Salinas is also viewed as being a person who is never satisfied with the way things are, who has a desire to change things so that everything can be better. Impossible is a word that is not in his dictionary. In addition to all his global interests, Ricardo Salinas’ heart is in his home, with his family. His great-grandfather, Benjamin Salinas Westrup instilled his descendants with the values of work, tenacity, effort, and passion to fulfill their dreams, always maintaining the unity of family ties. Among Salinas’ passions are the fine arts, and he has been a patron of different artistic and cultural endeavors. As a Mexican citizen, Salinas has displayed a deep love for the country’s culture, respect for its people, and a strong conviction in the possibilities of democratic change and economic transformation. Ricardo Salinas not only has played an outstanding role in the world of business. Since 1997, he has maintained a strong social commitment based on the conviction that people need tools and opportunities to excel. Based on this idea, he created Fundación Azteca, a nonprofit organization that attends to a wide range of social problems. It does so by supporting other organizations with tools and resources to improve the health, nutrition, education, and environment of the communities in which it operates. Fundación Azteca has touched millions of lives in Mexico and abroad. In 2005, Salinas launched Fundación Azteca America, an organization that is committed to improving the quality of life for the Hispanic community in the United States. The project has expanded to other countries such as Peru, Guatemala, and El Salvador. Recently Fundación Azteca launched the Esperanza Azteca project, establishing children and young people’s orchestras and choirs around the country. Behind the entrepreneur there is also a man eager to read material on a variety of topics, including science, history, economics, and business. Salinas regularly publishes a blog where he shares his thoughts on corporate, political, economic, and cultural issues. In addition, in his spare time he likes to play golf or poker. His passion for business was shown at an early age. When he was eight years old he began what would be his long business career with the sale of honey door to door. Today he is the founder and CEO of Grupo Salinas, the conglomerate that brings together some of the Mexico’s leading companies. Grupo Salinas has its roots in a small family business specializing in manufacturing furniture, founded over a century ago in 1906 by Benjamin Salinas Westrup. Today the companies employs over 70,000 people in eigth countries and has business divisions in the media, retail, financial services, telecommunications and Internet industries. Ricardo Salinas’s pioneering vision has received the recognition of the most important business and corporate organizations and forums on an international level. He has participated in the World Economic Forum, in the Young Presidents’ Organization, the Economist Roundtable on Mexico, the Institute of the Americas, UCLA, TED, CAP, the World Economic Forum, the Aspen Institute, The New York Forum, University of Michigan, Georgetown University, and the Harvard Business School. In these forums he usually discusses issues related to globalization, corporate governance, and the opportunities at the base of the pyramid.

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