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Dan Gilbert sells $500 million worth of Rocket stock

Stock cash-out coincides with philanthropic pledge to Detroit

Rocket Companies Chairman Dan Gilbert sold 20 million shares of common stock on Wednesday, cashing out just under $500 million, according to disclosures Rocket made to the Securities and Exchanges Commission.

The Form 4 file, made public Wednesday evening, shows Gilbert sold 20.2 million shares of common stock at $24.75 a unit for $499.95 million.

That stock sale would appear to be linked with Gilbert’s latest philanthropic venture. Last week, the Gilbert Family Foundation and the Rocket Community Fund pledged to donate a total of $500 million to community organizations in Detroit over the next decade.

The Gilbert Family Foundation will contribute $350 million, and the Rocket Community Fund will invest $150 million, Gilbert announced during his first television appearance in years.

To start, Gilbert’s family foundation will entirely eliminate the property tax debt owed by about 20,000 low-income homeowners in the city of Detroit. The Gilbert Family Foundation claims this will preserve roughly $400 million in wealth and home equity in the city.

The company sold 100 million shares of Class A common stock at $18 a share in August to kick off the mortgage IPO wave. Gilbert’s interest in Rocket Companies is well over 90%, even after the $500 million stock sale. His net worth has reached as high as an estimated $50 billion over the past year.

On Thursday, Rocket’s stock fell 2.34% to $22.55.

In late 2020, as the stock struggled despite industry-record profits, Rocket announced it would pay a special $1.11 dividend. It also announced a $1 billion share buyback.

The mortgage lender, which made $9.5 billion in profits on $320 billion in originations last year, also announced another sports sponsorship. Rocket Pro TPO, its wholesale business, will be the primary sponsor of the first-ever entrant in the Indianapolis 500 that is female-owned, female-driven and largely female-crewed. The company will have prominent branding on Paretta Autosport‘s No. 16 Chevrolet.

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