In case you didn’t know that video games can be enormously profitable, Brandon Beck — the cofounder and co-chairman of League of Legends developer Riot Games — has just sold a patch of dirt, in an off-market deal, for a whopping $37.3 million.
Of course, this isn’t just any old patch of dirt. It’s 3.2 usable acres in prime lower Bel Air, and it’s now one of the most coveted development sites in Los Angeles. The property originally boasted two side-by-side mansions, both of which were acquired in the 2000s by billionaire Tom Gores. To assemble the compound, Gores paid a whopping total of $56 million.
Gores subsequently demolished both houses and began work on his own custom mega-estate, though he ultimately changed his mind about the property. Beck purchased the near-vacant place in early 2017 for $35.5 million in cash, and has since spent upwards of $1.7 million on property taxes alone, not to mention any associated realtor fees and closing costs, so it doesn’t appear that the recent $37.3 million transaction netted him any profit.
Not that Beck needs the money — he’s reportedly worth upwards of $200 million, thanks to Riot Games’ acquisition by Chinese gaming giant Tencent. Now 39, the USC grad was born and raised in Beverly Hills by millionaires, and his parents still own a lavish mansion in the neighborhood; likewise, his longtime wife Natasha Beck was also bred in Beverly Hills. And the Becks still maintain other homes, including their main residence — a $21.5 million Brentwood mansion they bought from Michael Strahan.
In any case, the spendy buyer of the Bel Air property is mega-developer Ardie Tavangarian, best known for his over-the-top spec homes. It’s not yet clear what he plans to build, but the property currently includes an underground structure and a 15-car garage, per dated listings.
Astute real estate watchers will probably recognize Tavangarian’s name. He’s the guy who built that $83 million Pacific Palisades mansion, which sold last year to 26-year-old tech CEO Austin Russell. He’s also the guy responsible for a notably wild Bel Air compound, which was sold to the son of a Chinese billionaire for $75 million. Last year, Tavangarian bought Liz Taylor’s longtime Bel Air home, presumably to demolish and use as a development site.