Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Living in Ponzi's Old Digs

I bumped into Izhar Armony of Charles River Ventures at a panel last month, and somehow the Jack Madoff scandal came up...

... which led to a discussion about Charles Ponzi, the Bostonian who invented the Ponzi scheme.

Armony asked me if I knew who was living in the old Ponzi mansion in Lexington. I said I had no idea. Armony replied that Ofer Gneezy, CEO of the VOIP services firm iBasis, bought it in 2000, right after the company's IPO. Just some interesting trivia...

Gneezy told me that he was simply looking for a house, and only later did he discover who the previous owner was. Makes for good stories at parties, he said.

The mansion was worth about $40,000 in 1921 when Ponzi's estate was liquidated. Gneezy bought it for $2.8 million. Here's the Zillow listing.

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