Grupo Ferré Rangel

A mission-driven, fourth-generation diversified family office, leading Puerto Rico and the global communities in which it operates to a sustainable and prosperous future




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For generations, the family business of Grupo Ferré Rangel has been directly related to the social and economic development of Puerto Rico. Throughout its 100+ years, it has evolved and gained considerable experience in at least seven industries. Today, Grupo Ferré Rangel is a mission-driven, fourth generation diversified family office with five main areas of focus: real estate, media, customer engagement, investments and social innovation.

Antonio Luis Ferré with his father Luis A. Ferré (seated)

It started in 1918. Antonio Ferré Bacallao, a self-taught immigrant from Cuba who became an engineer, founded the Porto Rico Iron Works. Later, his son Luis A. Ferré, after graduating from MIT, founded Ponce Cement. He and his brothers worked together as Puerto Rico continued its industrial development. Their efforts were duly rewarded when in 1963 they became the first Puerto Rican company listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

In 1948, Luis A. Ferré acquired El Día newspaper, based in Ponce. Twenty years later he was elected Governor of Puerto Rico, and he was ethically bound to sell off his interests in the press. That’s when his son, Antonio Luis Ferré, saw an opportunity and bought his father’s publication. He moved it to San Juan eventually producing the country’s foremost newspaper, El Nuevo Día. Today, that business is a media company providing audience-centric, intelligence-driven solutions reaching 1.8 million adults in Puerto Rico and over 4.6 million Internet users through its digital touchpoints and brands.

Diversification and resiliency have always been pillars for Grupo Ferré Rangel, with the ability to apply its knowledge and experience into new, successful businesses. One example is the origin of LinkActiv Group, the customer engagement arm of the holding. In 2014, the family identified an opportunity to expand El Nuevo Día’s customer service capabilities, honed through 21 years of handling customer service operations for its publications. Now, this company is a leader in customer engagement
solutions. Its 1,400 operators provide bilingual and bicultural support serving clients in Puerto Rico and the mainland.

The real estate arm, Kingbird, is another example of maximizing its experience in the cement, construction, and development industries. Its office in Puerto Rico offers a wide array of property and commercial real estate management for a diverse portfolio of clients. The Boston office focuses on real estate investment management. It serves as a vertically integrated investment manager working on behalf of family offices as well as institutional and qualified individual investors.

From left to right, Don Antonio Luis, Don Antonio Ferré and Don Luis A. Ferré at Ponce Cement.

For more than a century, the family and its employees have also invested time and resources to contribute to Puerto Rico’s social and economic development. Some examples include the Ponce Museum of Art founded by Luis A. Ferré in 1959. In 1963 his sister, Sor Isolina Ferré, established a center in La Playita sector in Ponce to support communities in areas like education and nurturing an entrepreneurial spirit.

That sense of being part of the solution and having a forward-looking approach to current challenges has been at the center of the family’s entrepreneurial tradition, allowing the Group to create social value by leveraging core business competencies, philanthropic work, and employee engagement. Three years ago, it established a dedicated Social Innovation structure to systematically and formally engage in social entrepreneurship, impact investing and employee-led initiatives.

Just like any other company, it has encountered challenges and moments of crisis. The evolution of the media industry toward a digital world, the hit by Hurricane Maria – the worst hurricane in the history of the island, earthquakes and then, the pandemic. But opportunities sprouted from the crises. The ecosystem changed, Puerto Rico changed. What remained constant? The principles and values such as sustainability, positive transformation, and resiliency. The family also demonstrated agility by adjusting plans and welcoming diversification, Puerto Rican-centric investments, and socially impactful opportunities. Widening the scope of their portfolio across industries – such as housing, energy, and services – and geographies will benefit the next generation.

Being active as a family business in Puerto Rico for over a century is unusual. About 40% of US family-owned businesses turn into second-generation businesses, approximately 13% are passed down successfully to a third generation, and 3% to a fourth or beyond. The Ferré Rangel family is extremely proud of being part of this 3% and intends to be relevant and impactful for many years to come. “We have been present and committed to Puerto Rico during times of prosperity, but most importantly, during times of adversity,” says Maria Luisa Ferré Rangel, the company’s CEO. “Adversity has a way of reminding us how strong we all can be.”

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