Learn more about Houston Texas Owner Robert C. McNair, including how they made their wealth, education and more.

July 17, 2018

ROBERT C. MCNAIR | FOUNDER, CHAIRMAN, CEO | AGE: 80

Education: University of South Carolina

How They Acquired the Franchise: McNair paid a $700 million expansion fee in 1999 to bring the Texans to Houston. While the Texans ostensibly replaced the Oilers, who moved to Tennessee in ’96, the former inherited none of the franchise history, logos or players.

Net Worth: $3.8 billion (per Forbes in 2018)

Franchise Valuation: $2.8 billion (per Forbes in 2017)

How They Made Their Money: McNair made the bulk of his money in 1999, prior to buying the Texans, when he sold his power generator company, Cogen Technologies, to Enron for $1.5 billion in cash and stock.

In the Owner’s Words: While discussing the Texans’ GM search in 2018, McNair told reporters: "You want somebody who's confident of their viewpoint, can present it and defend it, and yet listen to other people if somebody's got a better argument …  If you disagree with me, I'm not going to get mad at you ... If you have a stronger argument, I can be convinced."

On the Texans’ desire for players with strong moral standing McNair said: “I think you need people you can trust playing next to you. You need to respect them. When you need to depend on them, you need somebody who'll be there.”

McNair also reportedly said of player protests: “[W]e can’t have the inmates running the prison.” He later later apologized for that “expression” and claimed he was referring to the league office, not the players.

Political Donations: McNair is one of the most active owners when it comes to political donations. During the 2016 campaign cycle, he donated $1.5 million to the Senate Leadership Fund, a super PAC focused on protecting the Republican majority in the U.S. Senate; $100K to the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC dedicated to “protecting and strengthening the Republican majority in the U.S. House”; and various other sums to republican presidential campaigns. Following the ‘16 presidential election, McNair donated $2 million to the Great America PAC, the “premiere Pro-Trump super PAC.”

NFL Committees: Finance Committee (Chair), Chairmen's Committee, Audit Committee, Compensation Committee.

Next in Line: Bob McNair’s son, Cal, has served as vice chairman of the Texans since 2008 and also assumed the additional role of chief operating officer in 2012. He reportedly took on a bigger role with the team during Bob’s battle with cancer in ’14.

• Click here to read The MMQB’s Complete NFL Owner’s Guide

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