Latter-day Saints are known for owning influential companies in America and this sent us on a search to find more large companies that are either owned by a member of the church or owned by the church itself. So here are the list of large businesses in no particular order that are owned by Latter-day Saints and the church.
Mormon David Neeleman founded JetBlue in 1999, though it was called “NewAir” at the time. He is no longer the CEO of the company, but during the almost decade he spent at the helm of the company, he was known to sit on the back row of his company’s planes, which had seats that didn’t recline, when traveling to demonstrate that serving the customer was more important that serving the CEO. He launched a new Brazilian airline called Azul in 2008.
Black & Decker Corporation
Mormon Nolan D. Archibald is a well-known business man who served as chairman of the board, president, and CEO of Black & Decker. When he became president and CEO in 1986, he was the youngest CEO of a Fortune 500 Company at age 42. He and his wife, Margaret, have seven sons and one daughter. All of their sons are Eagle Scouts and served LDS missions.
SkyWest Airlines was created when Mormon Ralph Atkin, a lawyer in St. George, Utah, purchased Dixie Airlines in 1972. It was initially meant to fly businessmen from St. George to Salt Lake City, and after some struggles, the company expanded across the western United States. Today, it has a fleet of 341 aircraft that fly to 189 destinations.
Marriott Hotels International, Inc.
Marriott International was founded by Mormon J. Willard Marriott and is now led by his son, Bill Marriott. The hospitality company has more than 4,000 properties in more than 80 countries and territories. Each Marriott hotel room has a Bible as well as a copy of The Book of Mormon, and in 2011, the company announced that pornography would not be offered as entertainment in new hotel rooms.
City Creek Center
One of the expensive Malls in America, City Creek Center is owned by The Church. This March, the LDS Church opened a megamall across the street from its neo-Gothic temple in Salt Lake City. The estimated cost of the emporium, which features a retractable glass roof and fountains that spew choreographed bouts of water and fire, is $2 billion.
The Deseret News is a newspaper published in Salt Lake City, Utah, United States. It is Utah’s oldest continuously published daily newspaper and has the largest Sunday circulation in the state and the second largest daily circulation behind The Salt Lake Tribune. The News is owned by Deseret News Publishing Company, a subsidiary of Deseret Management Corporation, aholding company owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church).
Polynesian Cultural Center
The LDS Church 42-acre Polynesian Cultural Center on Oahu, Hawaii, features daily luaus (except on Sunday), an “Island Buffet,” seven simulated Polynesian villages, Samoan tree-climbing lessons, Tahitian spear-throwing lessons, and more. Tickets cost anywhere from $35.95 to $228.95. According to its 2010 tax filing, the center had net assets worth $70 million and collected $23 million in ticket sales alone, while also receiving $36 million in donations or gifts.
On an article published by LDS Daily they revealed Church owned companies, and that the church owns and manages two different types of businesses – non-profit and for-profit. There are different advantages to both, depending on the purpose. Generally, businesses that serve the church or its members directly for religious or service purposes are non-profit companies. For example, Beehive Clothing (the company that makes garments and temple clothing) or Deseret Industries are non-profit organizations. On the other hand, Deseret News and the City Creek shopping center in downtown Salt Lake City are for-profit business – both owned and operated by Corporation of the Presiding Bishop, the business division of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
President Gordon B. Hinckley explained it best when he said, “We have a few income-producing business properties, but the return from these would keep the Church going only for a very short time. Tithing is the Lord’s law of finance. There is no other financial law like it. It is a principle given with a promise spoken by the Lord Himself for the blessing of His children. When all is said and done, the only real wealth of the Church is the faith of its people.”
Here are some of the companies included in the list:
- Bonneville International – Media holding company
- Bonneville Communications – Full service marketing firm.
- Bonneville Broadcasting – Radio stations
- 97.3 FM KIRO Radio Seattle
- 710 AM ESPN Seattle
- 770 AM KTTH Seattle
- 92.3 FM KTAR News Phoenix
- 98.7 FM Arizona Sports Phoenix
- 620 AM ESPN Phoenix
- 101 FM KOSI Denver
- 98.5 FM KTGO Denver
- 104.3 FM KKFN Denver
- 1600 AM KEPN Denver
- 102.7 FM & 1160 AM KSL Salt Lake City
- 103.5 FM KRSP Salt Lake City
- 100.3 FM KSFI Salt Lake City
- Bonneville Distribution – Distribution for TV & radio stations that broadcast Mormon Tabernacle Choir and LDS General Conference
- KSL 5 TV – NBC TV station
- Deseret Digital Media – Website management company
- Deseret News Publishing – News publishing company
- Deseret Book Co. – Religious goods retailer and distributor
- Covenant Communications
- Seagull Book & Tape
- Shadow Mountain Press
- Excel Entertainment
- The Pacific Business News – News outlet servicing Hawaii
- Hawaii Reserves – Hawaii real estate holding company
- Laie Water Company – Provides water to all of Laie
- Laie Shopping Center – 72,000 square feet of shopping and services
- Laie Park – Laie Hawaii park
- Laie Cemetery – Laie cemetary
- Hukilau Beach Park – Beach park in Laie
- Many other commercial & residential properties
- Property Reserve Inc – Real estate holding company
- Utah Property Management Associates – Real estate management company
- Commercial Properties:
- Beneficial Tower – 20 story office building
- World Trade Center – 366,696 square foot office building
- Deseret News Building – 9 story office building
- Eagle Gate Plaza – 11 story office and parking structure
- Key Bank Tower – 27 floor office building
- Social Hall Plaza – 6 floor office building
- Triad Tower – 3 buildings totaling 48,502 square feet
- Zions Bank Building – 18 floor commercial office building
- 139 E South Temple – 38,192 square foot office building
- JC Penney Building – 15 floor commercial office building
- Ensign Plaza South – 75,000 office building in Ogden Utah
- Regent Street – 47,970 square foot office building
- Orpheum Office Plaza – 24.682 square foot office building
- McIntyre Building – 11,065 square foot office building
- Gateway Tower West – 19 floor commercial building
- 40 East 100 South – 37,089 square foot office building
- Deseret Book Building – 48,612 square foot office building
- Residential Properties:
- Brigham Apartments – Apartment building in downtown Salt Lake
- Colonial Court Apartments – Apartment building in Ogden Utah
- Eagle Gate Apartments –
- Gateway Condominiums
- City Creek Landing – Apartment building in downtown Salt Lake
- West Temple Apartments – 8 story apartment building in downtown Salt Lake
- Garden Apartments – Apartment building in downtown Salt Lake
- First Avenue Apartments – Apartments in Salt Lake City
- Mixed Use Properties
- City Creek Center – 700,000 square foot mall in downtown Salt Lake
- Lake Park Corporate Centre – 260 acrea mixed use development
- Highbury at Lake Park – Mixed use development in West Valley, Utah
- Shoal Creek Valley (Liberty, Missouri)
- 1600 Vine Street Complex – Mixed use development in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Temple Square Hospitality (Catering Company)
- Beneficial Financial Group (Insurance and Financial Services Company)