Marcelo Claure

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Marcelo Claure
Headshot of Marcelo Claure.jpg
ResidenceMiami Beach, Florida
NationalityAmerican, Bolivian
Alma materBentley University, Waltham, Massachusetts
OccupationPresident, Chairman & CEO of Brightstar Corp.
Spouse(s)Jordan Engard
 
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Marcelo Claure
Headshot of Marcelo Claure.jpg
ResidenceMiami Beach, Florida
NationalityAmerican, Bolivian
Alma materBentley University, Waltham, Massachusetts
OccupationPresident, Chairman & CEO of Brightstar Corp.
Spouse(s)Jordan Engard

Marcelo Claure is a Bolivian wireless industry distribution entrepreneur and founder of Brightstar Corp.[1]

Since its founding in 1997, Brightstar has grown into an $8 billion business with local presence in approximately 50 countries, on six continents.[2]

Early Life and Education[edit]

Claure was born in La Paz, Bolivia on December 9, 1970. After spending two years in Guatemala, his family moved to Morocco and then to the Dominican Republic before returning home to La Paz, where he spent much of his childhood. He attended the American Cooperative School in La Paz, graduating in 1989. Later that year, he left La Paz to attend what-was-then the University of Lowell, in Lowell, Massachusetts. He subsequently transferred to Bentley College, in Waltham, Massachusetts, graduating in 1993 with a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Finance.[3]

Business career[edit]

After graduation, Claure returned to La Paz and joined the Bolivian Soccer Federation as International Marketing Manager.

In 1995, he returned to the United States and bought USA Wireless, a cellular retailer. He grew and expanded the company before selling it one year later.[4] In 1996, Claure became President of Small World Communications, a California-based communications and distribution company.[5] He led the company for two years before re-locating to Florida to start Brightstar in 1997.[6]

Brightstar[edit]

Brightstar was founded in Miami in 1997, as a distributor and service provider to the wireless industry with a focus on the Latin American market. The company opened offices in Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay and the Caribbean. In 2000, the company entered distribution agreement with Motorola for all of Latin America. This was followed by the launch of subsidiaries in Argentina, Uruguay, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru and El Salvador. A Brightstar US subsidiary opened in 2001, based in Chicago, and later expanded into Asia, followed by Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Brightstar operates in approximately 50 countries and six continents around the globe. Forbes Magazine recognized it as one of the largest privately held companies in the U.S., listing it 58th in 2012.[7] Inc. Magazine identified Brightstar as one of the fastest growing companies in the U.S., placing it sixth in its annual Inc. 500/5000 listing in 2009.[8] It has also been recognized by HispanicBusiness.com as the largest Hispanic-owned business in the U.S. in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012.[9]

In October of 2013, Brightstar Corp. and SoftBank Corp. announced a definitive agreement for SoftBank to invest $1.26 billion in Brightstar, enabling the company to expand its scale and operations, making it the world’s largest global distribution, services and innovation company in the telecommunications industry.[10]

Soccer & Bolivar[edit]

In 2008, Claure bought BAISA (Bolivar Administración, Inversiones y Servicios Asociados, S.R.L.), the entity that operates Bolivar, a soccer team in Bolivia.[11] He also serves on FIFA’s (Fédération Internationale de Football Association’s) Committee for Fair Play and Social Responsibility.

Awards & Recognition[edit]

World Economic Forum (WEF) Young Global Leader.[12] Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award and lifetime member of Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Hall of Fame.[13] Hispanic Businessman of the Year by the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Global Telecoms Business “Forty Under Forty” Leaders;[14] Hispanic Business Magazine, Entrepreneur of the Year;[15] Hispanic Magazine, Top Hispanic Entrepreneurs; LISTA, CEO of the Year; América Economía, Award of Excellence; PODER Magazine, Top Hispanic Entrepreneur; BN Americas, Hall of Fame; Wall Street Journal, CEO Council Member [16] and The Group of Fifty (G-50) Member.

Advisory Board of Harvard University Kennedy School of Government’s Latino Leadership Initiative. Bentley University’s Board of Trustees Florida International University’s Board of Trustees.[17]

Personal life[edit]

Claure married Jordan Engard, in 2005. The couple has two daughters and lives in Miami Beach. He has two children from an earlier marriage.

Philanthropy[edit]

Together with Nicholas Negroponte, he is a founding member of One Laptop Per Child, an organization focused on empowering the world’s poorest children through education by providing them with a rugged low-cost laptop.[18]

References[edit]