- Birthday11th Aug, 49
- Birth PlaceUnited States
- Marital statusMarried
Craig O. McCaw, also known as The Wireless wizard Oz, was born in Centralia, Washington. Craig’s father, a broadcasting magnate was into business of selling radio and television stations, and irrespective of his significant debts provided quality life to his family. As a teenager, Craig and his brothers worked as lineman and door to door salesman for one of their father’s cable television services. Craig was Dyslexic and made extra efforts in his studies, and even continued to run the cable business while studying at Stanford University. He was naive in college, when he took over his father’s business, left with burden of taxes and debts forcing his accountant mother to liquidate the family business.
Craig McCaw then expanded the cable business, and backed by established firms, he acquired a credit line of more than a billion dollar. This future American cellular tycoon then switched into untested and new business of cellular telephone services, and built the McCaw’s cellular empire, which he later sold it to America’s telecom giant AT&T for $11.5 billion. In 2001, he founded XO communications, but ended up under debt of $7 billion, and filed bankruptcy in 2002. Further, his attention turned to the emerging field of wireless broadband Internet access service, and he successfully founded and expanded Clearwire Corporation. The company delivered 4G network services, covering more than 110 million people in 71 markets of United States. Later in 2010, Clearwire stumbled as its operating system, WiMax, failed to catch on as an industry standard. Resulting, Craig resigned his seat on the board of Directors and stepped down as the Chairman of Clearwire. But, don’t bet against him, Craig has the wisdom and experience on his side now.
Craig is an avid aviator, away from his office, he will be found flying his own jet. He is also the founding donor of The Free Willy Foundation and reportedly donated $2 million. Craig was earlier married to Wendy McCaw, a newspaper publisher, who he met during his studies in Stanford. They divorced in 1997, and Wendy reportedly received divorce settlement of $460 million. Now married to Susan Rasinski McCaw, Craig has three children and the family makes their home in Seattle, Washington. Mrs. McCaw, an investment banker and former United States Ambassador to Austria, was also the major fundraiser for George W. Bush’s presidential campaigns.
Family & relationships
Hunts Point estate
The telecom billionaire, who single handedly ushered a revolution in the telecom industry before disappearing into oblivion lives in this English manor styled home with his wife Susan Mccaw. He bought the place from musician Kenny G in 1999 for an estimated sum of $20 million. The estate comprises two mansions and has a 327 waterfront area on the shores of Lake Washington.
Location: Mccaw grew up in the Puget Sound area of Seattle and has been staying in this estate located on the Hunts Point on the shores of Lake Washington since 1999.
Accommodation: The estate has two main buildings built on 15,180 sq feet of land on 4.3 acres. One of them is a guest house which still is the place where Kenny G lives whenever he is in the town for a concert. The mansion has 8 bedrooms and 10.5 baths for the convenience of the owner.
Neighborhood: The house rubs boundaries with other major billionaire homes of tech wizards Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos.
The waterfront estate
White Cloud yacht
Motor yacht White Cloud is a super luxury yacht constructed with impressive steel, and custom built by Feadship Royal Van Lent Shipyard in 1983, in Netherlands. Craig McCaw bought White Cloud from Dutch millionaire Bram van Leeuwen, and sent it for a refurbish in 2004, where it got lengthened with addition of a new deck house.
Features: Designed by De Voogt Naval Architects, White Cloud in her times was known to be one of the most expensive yachts ever built with bath tubs made of Lapiz Lazuli and interior furnished with gold. Interior design of the White Cloud was done by Luigi Sturchio.
Accommodation: White Cloud is able to provide luxury accommodation to 10 guests, including qualified crew of 28 to ensure luxury yacht vacation feel. Yacht got ultra spacious rooms, thanks to its rock solid beams of 9.69 meters.
Specification: Powered by twin MTU diesel engines, White Cloud can steam to reach maximum cruising speed of 18 knots.
The unique design
Craig Mccaw, the wireless pioneer bought this 342-hectare island for $19 million in 1994. He recently has got permissions for real estate development that includes 80 dwellings, 5,000 square feet of retail and 35,000 square feet of commercial space. However, Mccraw has made sure that such massive urbanization of the land does not deride it from its existing natural value. He has in place a strict environmental regime under which complete organic farming is the first priority. Further, all the power lines are underground and electric cars and golf carts are used for transportation. Craig has dug deep in his pockets to ensure that the island is one of the most developed but not at the cost of surrounding environment.
Location: It is one of British Columbia's Gulf Islands, is located around 1.5 miles off the coast of Vancouver Island. James Island is sandwiched between Sidney Island and the coast of Vancouver Island near Sidney, British Columbia.
History: The private refuge of Craig Mccaw has got a piece of history attached to it. It once acted as the hunting ground for the Victorian sportsmen and had a dynamite plant established over it in 1913. However, the plant was shut down in the later part of the century and the inhabitants were relocated.
Craig Mccaw has more reasons to be happy than he must have thought of while buying this island. At $76 million, the isle is the highest valued property in the Capital Regional District in 2009.
Beautiful golf course
A distant view
Bombardier Challenger 604
Craig Mccaw has put the fortune that he amassed through his cellular exploits to good use and bought himself a host of toys. Apart from owning a superyacht Tatoosh, which he later sold off to fellow billionaire Paul Allen he also owned a small fleet of private jets, majority of which he has already disposed off or is in the process of selling. A certified pilot himself, the private jet aficionado sold his Gulfstream G 5 to actor Jim Carrey for an estimated $38 million. Another of his jet, Bombardier Global Express was bought by The Washington Times.
Now he is left with his Bombardier Challenger 604, which itself is one of the premium private jets available out there. This long range jet offers its eight passengers the ultimate comfort of flying. The jet is capable of flying 3,850 miles in a single refuel and has a maximum speed of 0.74 mach. The jet was one of the most successful product of Bombardier and was in production till 2006.
Craig and Susan McCaw Foundation
The Craig and Susan McCaw Foundation support numerous educational, environmental, and international economic development projects. Craig is the founding president while the Susain Mccaw serves as the director. The foundation is registered in Kirkland and has assets worth $57 million.