Gustavo Cisneros

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This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Cisneros and the second or maternal family name is Rendiles.
Gustavo Cisneros
Gustavo Cisneros
Gustavo Cisneros
Born Gustavo Alfredo Cisneros Rendíles
(1945-11-20) 20 November 1945 (age 71)
Caracas, Venezuela
Citizenship  Venezuela
 Spain[citation needed]
 Dominican Republic[1][2]
Alma mater Babson College
Occupation Media mogul
Net worth Decrease US$ 1.38 billion (2017)
Spouse(s) Patricia Phelps de Cisneros
Children 3

Gustavo Alfredo Cisneros Rendíles (born November 20, 1945)[3] is a Venezuelan businessman and Chairman of Grupo Cisneros.[4]

Early life and education[edit]

Cisneros is the son of Diego Cisneros and Albertina Cisneros (née Rendíles Martínez).

Cisneros's father, Diego Cisneros, was in business in Caracas from 1929 and received the Pepsi concession for Venezuela in 1940, before going on to gain the concession for private TV channel Venevisión in 1961. The Cisneros family was the first-wealthiest in South America on the 2006 Forbes ranking.[5]

Cisneros graduated from Suffield Academy in Connecticut in 1963.[6] He graduated from Babson College in Massachusetts in 1968.[7]

Cisneros Group[edit]

Cisneros’ wealth comes from his holdings in media, entertainment, telecommunications and consumer products companies.[8] The Cisneros Group of Companies is one of the largest privately held Spanish-language media and entertainment companies.[9] Until the buyout of Univision, the United States’ leading Spanish-language television network, Cisneros was one of the biggest shareholders of the Company. He also owns Venevision International, which produces and distributes media and entertainment products throughout the world, and Venevisión, a Venezuelan television network. Since 1980 the Group has owned the Miss Venezuela contest[10] and since 2001 also the Leones del Caracas baseball team.

Long an advocate of free enterprise[11] Cisneros has for many years been expanding his operations outside of Venezuela and into overseas markets, including the U.S., Spain and more recently China.[8]

One of his major accomplishments has been a major role in the international development of telenovelas[12] – emotion-packed melodramas based on the harsh realities of life in Latin America that are now broadcast to about 2 billion people around the world. In part to honor his international success, he was named MIPCOM "Personality of the Year" in 2005,[13] a prestigious media industry award.[14]

In August 2013, Gustavo Cisneros appointed his daughter Adriana Cisneros de Griffin as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Cisneros.[15][16]

Cisneros has been developing Tropicalia, a multibillion-dollar resort in Miches, near Punta Cana;[17][18] its opening is scheduled for 2019.[19]

In the past, he has been listed among the world’s richest men according to Forbes magazine, which estimated his fortune at US$1.38 billion in 2017.[20]


Although Cisneros and Hugo Chávez were originally friends with Cisernos contributing to Chávez's first presidential campaigns, he has been accused of involvement in the 2002 Venezuelan coup d'état attempt against Chávez after their relationship became strained due to Chávez's confrontation of the media.[21][22]

Cisneros has in the past been questioned about his relationship with former Venezuelan President, Hugo Chávez.[23]


The Cisneros Foundation (Fundación Cisneros) runs a wide range of educational and cultural programs aimed at improving the lives of Latin Americans.[24] These include the AME program for professional development of Latin American educators, visual arts education and awareness based on the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros; PPV, a visual thinking curriculum for Latin American school children, and traveling art exhibits showcasing the talents of Latin American artists for North America and European audiences.[25]

Having grown up with Spanish colonial art, Patricia and Gustavo Cisneros began collecting Latin American abstraction after their marriage, in 1970. Over the years, it has grown to more than 2,000 pieces, including about 200 Spanish colonial objects. In addition, the couple have amassed a vast holding of ethnographic material from the Amazon.[26] Based in New York and Caracas, the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros today also includes works by Uruguay’s Joaquin Torres-Garcia, Brazil’s Lygia Clark and Venezuelan modern masters Jesus Soto, Alejandro Otero, and Carlos Cruz-Diez. The Cisneros Foundation was moving toward building a permanent institution in Caracas in the late 1990s until Hugo Chavez was elected president. In 2007, the foundation encountered resistance from the Chavez government when lending works by Venezuelan painter Armando Reveron (1889-1954) to New York’s Museum of Modern Art for the museum’s first retrospective devoted to a single Latin American artist in 50 years.[27]

Personal life[edit]

Further information: Patricia Phelps de Cisneros

Cisneros has been married to his wife, Patricia Phelps de Cisneros, since 1970.[28][26] She has been a significant MoMA benefactor since 1992, she has been a trustee of the museum and made substantial cash contributions to the museum’s recent renovation. Her name is on one of the institution’s exhibition rooms. In addition to MoMA, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Hammer Museum, Long Beach’s Museum of Latin American Art, and the Museo Reina Sofía in Madrid also have received art loans.[27][29] Phelps de Cisneros is an active member of the International Council and the Latin American Acquisitions Committee of Tate, London; she is an International Trustee of the Fundación Amigos del Museo del Prado, Madrid; belongs to the Association Centre Pompidou América Latina; the Museum Berggruen’s International Council; and the American Friends of the Fondation Beyeler, among others.

Cisneros has lived in the Dominican Republic since the 1990s[30] and holds Dominican citizenship.[31][30][32][33][1][2]

In addition to Venezuelan citizenship, Cisneros also holds United States, Spanish and Dominican citizenship.[34]



  • Americas Society, Chairman’s International Advisory Council
  • Babson College, Board of Overseers
  • Barrick Gold Corporation, Board of Directors; Member, International Advisory Board and Compensation Committee; Chair, Corporate Governance and Nominating Committee
  • Cardinal Cisneros Foundation, Board of Trustees
  • Council for the Atlantic Institute of Government, Member
  • Global Information Infrastructure Commission (GIIC), Commissioner[37]
  • Haiti’s Presidential Advisory Council on Economic Growth and Investment
  • Harvard University, David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, Advisory Committee
  • Ibero-American Council for Productivity and Competitiveness, Member
  • International Center for Economic Growth, Board of Overseers
  • Rockefeller University, University Council, Member
  • RRE Ventures LLC, Senior Advisor
  • United Nations Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Task Force, Charter Member
Past affiliations

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Rosario, Fausto (17 March 2014). "Gustavo Cisneros ha recibido la ciudadanía dominicana en tres ocasiones" (in Spanish). Santo Domingo: Acento. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  2. ^ a b "El magnate venezolano Gustavo Cisneros adquiere la nacionalidad dominicana" (in Spanish). Santo Domingo: 7 Días. 17 March 2014. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  3. ^ Bachelet, Pablo (2004). Gustavo Cisneros, pioneer. Barcelona : Planeta, p. 19. ISBN 0-9748724-8-2
  4. ^ Gott, Richard (May–June 2006). "Venezuela's Murdoch". New Left Review (39). 
  5. ^ "The World's Richest People". Forbes(2006). Retrieved on January 19, 2009.
  6. ^ Gustavo A. Cisneros '63 to Speak at Suffield Academy’s 2006 Commencement. Cisneros Group of Companies (May 15, 2006). Retrieved on January 29, 2009.
  7. ^ Gustavo A. Cisneros. Babson College. Retrieved on January 29, 2009.
  8. ^ a b Carugati, Anna (January 2005). "Gustavo Cisneros, chairman y CEO de Cisneros Group of Companies" (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 2007-10-07. Retrieved 2007-07-31. 
  9. ^ Kirkman, Alexandra (2001-11-26). "The visionary". Forbes. Retrieved 2007-07-31. 
  10. ^ [1]
  11. ^ Bachelet, Pablo (2004). Gustavo Cisneros, pioneer. Barcelona : Planeta, p. 259. ISBN 0-9748724-8-2
  12. ^ Mipcom Personality of the Year, Gustavo Cisneros, Supplement to Mipcom Daily News 3, October 19, 2005
  13. ^ "Gustavo Cisneros named MIPCOM 2005 Personality of the year". MIPCOM. 2005-07-25. Retrieved 2007-07-31. 
  14. ^ Variety, October 7, 2005
  15. ^ Yearwood, John (1 February 2012). "Adriana Cisneros - Interview with The World Desk The Miami Herald". Miami Herald. 
  16. ^ Adriana Cisneros: the new face of Cisneros Group
  17. ^ Cándida Acosta; Viviano de León (1 October 2009). "Cisneros invertirá US$2,000 millones". Listín Diario (in Spanish). Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  18. ^ Ircania Vásquez; Jairon Severino (6 March 2013). "Chávez impulsó la salida de capitales". Listín Diario (in Spanish). Santo Domingo. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  19. ^ Suárez, Manuel (28 May 2015). "Ganan terreno en RD los hoteleros vacacionales no españoles" (in Spanish). Retrieved 7 October 2015. 
  20. ^ "Gustavo Cisneros & family". Forbes. 18 April 2017. 
  21. ^ Nikolas Kozloff (2007), Hugo Chávez: Oil, Politics and the Challenge to the United States, Palgrave Macmillan. p68
  22. ^ Nelson, Brian A. (2009). The silence and the scorpion : the coup against Chávez and the making of modern Venezuela (online ed.). New York: Nation Books. p. 79. ISBN 1568584180. 
  23. ^ Romero, Simon (28 April 2002). "Coup? Not His Style. But Power? Oh, Yes.". The New York Times. 
  24. ^ "About/Quienes Somos" (in Spanish). Fundación Cisneros. 2006. Retrieved 2007-07-31. 
  25. ^ Sierra Laffite, Michelle (2007-02-19). Por Amor al Arte. Expansion.Mexico.
  26. ^ a b Suzanne Muchnic (August 19, 2007), Spreading the riches Los Angeles Times.
  27. ^ a b Chris Kaul (January 28, 2009), An art trove ends its nomadic phase Los Angeles Times.
  28. ^ "Chapter 1: Patricia Phelps de Cisneros, A Passion for Latin America" (Video). Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. 16 October 2016. 
  29. ^ Cristina Carrillo De Albornoz (March 27, 2012), Madrid's Reina Sofía signs agreement with Cisneros Foundation The Art Newspaper.
  30. ^ a b Dan a conocer Centro Cardiovascular Cedimat
  31. ^ Rivas, Ubi (28 February 2016). "¿Quién es Gustavo Cisneros? - El Nacional". El Nacional (in Spanish). 
  32. ^ Presidente se reúne con Bush padre
  33. ^ José Fernando López e Isaac Lee (27 August 2003). "Objetivo "militar" de Chávez". Retrieved 2 March 2014. 
  34. ^ Pablo Bachelet, Gustavo Cisneros Un empresario global, Barcelona, Planeta pag.20
  35. ^ "Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award". NATPE. Retrieved 6 September 2015. 
  36. ^ "NATPE 2015 Bio Reel: Gustavo & Adriana Cisneros, Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award Recipients". NATPE. 28 January 2015. Retrieved 6 September 2015. 
  37. ^ "Commissioners - GIIC - Global Information Infrastructure Commission". Global Information Infrastructure Commission. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Bachelet, Pablo; Fuentes, Carlos (prólogo de) (2004). Gustavo Cisneros: Un empresario global (in Spanish). Barcelona: Planeta. ISBN 978-8-408-04958-6. OCLC 55114034. 
  • Bachelet, Pablo; Fuentes, Carlos (forward by); Grossman, Edith (translated by) (2004). Gustavo Cisneros: Pioneer. Barcelona: Planeta. ISBN 978-0-974-87248-3. OCLC 57305155. 
  • Rodríguez, José Ángel; Iglesias, Carmen (prólogo); Ortega, Julio (epílogo) (2015). Los Cisneros: rostros y rastros de una familia, de la villa de Cisneros de Campos al nuevo mundo global (1570-2015). (in Spanish). Caracas: Fundación Cisneros. ISBN 978-0-984-01733-1. OCLC 936047687. 
  • Rodríguez Luis, José Ángel; Iglesias, Carmen (prologue); Ortega, Julio (epilogue); Dodman, Jenny (translation) (2015). Cisneros: A Family History (1570-2015). Caracas: Fundación Cisneros. ISBN 978-0-984-01731-7. OCLC 922087148. 

External links[edit]