Foundation of Best Buy founder enriched by stock rebound

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Best Buy founder and Chairman Emeritus Richard Schulze, 72, is also the biggest shareholder in the Richfield-based retailer. As the company's stock has turned into a stellar performer, the foundation that bears his name is also increasing in value.

The Star Tribune reports that Schulze, as previously announced, is reducing his ownership stake in the company to fund the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation, which will focus on education, health and health care and human services.

At the end of 2012, Best Buy stock closed at a disappointing $11.85 per share. Shares closed Friday at $43.69.

In 16 separate sales since Labor Day, Schulze exercised trades worth $204 million. TwinCitiesBusiness this week reported that the value of Schulze’s holdings have bolted up with the surge in Best Buy's Wall Street performance. Yahoo!Finance tracked batch of sales between November 1 and 5, which showed that Schulze sold off about 1.7 million shares of Best Buy stock for approximately $73.8 million.

Schulze’s trades were executed both for unspecified general purposes and pursuant to Schulze’s previously stated plan to divest shares for the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation. The foundation probably will reach $100 million by the end of this year and $200 million by the end of 2014, according to Mark Dienhart, who runs the foundation.

The company will report third-quarter earnings Tuesday. The Star Tribune story said that 16 of the 28 analysts who cover Best Buy have buy recommendations on the stock.

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Best Buy founder likely to wield significant influence

Even though Richard Schulze is stepping down, he remains the retail giant's dominant shareholder controlling more than 20 percent of Best Buy stock, according to the Star Tribune. Schulze announced he's resigning as chairman and board director from the Minnesota-based company after an internal investigation found he didn't disclose former CEO Brian Dunn's inappropriate relationship with an employee.

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