In 1887, a boy destined to become one of America’s most powerful men was born in the Ukraine. His family moved to America in 1896 and settled in Philadelphia, where the young Albert Monroe Greenfield attended public schools.
He dropped out at 15 to work as a clerk for a prominent real estate lawyer, becoming fascinated with the power of property. In 1905, when he was only 17, he opened his own real estate firm, Albert M. Greenfield & Co. The precocious teenage entrepreneur, an instant success, was soon putting together multi-million dollar deals.
Bankers Trust Company, his venture into commercial banking, closed in 1930, a victim of the Great Depression. Previously, he formed Bankers Securities Corporation as a holding company for his rapidly growing business empire. Undeterred by his failure in the banking business, he persistently rebuilt his wealth, buying property at bargain prices.
Bankers Securities grew to include retailers such as Lit Brothers, Bonwit Teller and Tiffany with 112 stores in 19 states. He also controlled the Philadelphia Yellow Cab Company and six major Philadelphia hotels.
With his businesses taking in almost a billion dollars a year, Albert M. Greenfield, became one of the most influential leaders of his time.