Phoenix, AZ

The richest person in Phoenix, Arizona

Luay Rahil
Photo Credit: Canva

Earlier this year, Forbes published its annual list of the richest people on the planet with its billionaire's list. Nearly 2,674 billionaires and more than 25% live in the United States. Collectively these billionaires are worth $13.1 trillion, up from $8 trillion on the 2020 list.

Today, I will uncover the richest person in Phoenix.

According to Forbes Magazine, ten billionaires consider Arizona their home, and none is wealthier than Ernest Garcia II. He lives in Tempe, Phoenix, with a net worth of $17 billion. He is the 39th richest man in the country.

Who is Ernest Garcia II?

Ernest Garcia II is an American billionaire who made his money selling used car owner of DriveTime and major shareholder of Carvana.

He was born in 1957. His dad co-owned a liquor store and was the mayor of Gallup, New Mexico. Ernest Garcia II attended the University of Arizona, but he dropped out of school and started to work as a stockbroker and real estate developer in Phoenix, Arizona.

His ambition led him to some questionable business practices, and he was found guilty of felony charges after admitting that he fraudulently obtained a $30-million line of credit in a series of transactions that also helped Lincoln Savings & Loan firm hide its ownership in risky desert Arizona land from regulators.

Ugly Duckling

In 1991, Garcia purchased Ugly Duckling, a failed rent-a-car franchise, for under $1 million, and merged it with his own finance company. Ugly Duckling became a finance company that sells used cars to people with poor credit scores.

Five years late, Ugly Duckling became a public company. However, in 1999, Garcia was sued again for some suspicious real estate deals, so Garcia and former Ugly Duckling CEO, Gregory Sullivan, took the company private and renamed it DriveTime, and it became the nation's fourth-biggest used car retailer.


In 2012, his son Ernest Garcia, III launched Carvana 2012 as a subsidiary of DriveTime, a conventional used car business that operates 126 dealerships in 25 states. Then, in 2017, the younger Garcia struck out on his own, forming Carvana out of Drivetime in an IPO that raised $225 million.

The older Garcia, His father, remains its largest shareholder in Carva.

Other people on Forbes List.

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