Al Taubman
This Oct. 10, 2008 photo shows shopping mall mogul A. Alfred Taubman in Waterford Township, Mich. Carlos Osorio—AP

Alfred Taubman, Inventor of Indoor Shopping Malls, Dies at 91

Apr 18, 2015

Alfred Taubman, a real estate developer who invented the concept of indoor suburban shopping malls, has died at 91.

His son, Robert Taubman, the chairman of his father's company, shared the news on Friday.

"He was so proud of what this wonderful company he founded 65 years ago has accomplished," Robert Taubman said in a message to the company's employees. "Tonight, after dinner in his home, a heart attack took him from us, ending what was a full, extraordinary life that touched so many people in so many wonderful ways around the world."

Alfred Taubman was born to German Jewish immigrants in Michigan in 1924, CNN reports. When he noticed in the 1950s that Americans were moving to the suburbs, he thought they would need centralized places to shop. It was a brilliant innovation. In 2015, Forbes put his net worth at $3.1 billion.

But Taubman's business life was not always rosy. He bought Sotheby's auction house in 1983 and was sent to jail for nine months in 2002 after he was convicted of conspiring with Christie's to fix auction house commission rates. He maintained his innocence.

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