Exploring Fort Wayne, IN - USA
Corvette Classics Museum - 17th December 2008
Owner Keith Busse believes his collection of nearly 60 Corvettes is the second-largest in the world after that of Bob McDorman, a Chevrolet dealer in Ohio. They're all housed in his Corvette Classics Museum, an 18,000-square-foot showroom open to the public.
Mr. Busse is chief executive of Steel Dynamics Inc., a Fort Wayne company that has seen its stock price rise from about $12 at the beginning of 2003 to as high as $45.65 in February 2005.
The 61-year-old Corvette enthusiast lives in a 7,000-square-foot mansion when he's not spending time at one of his two lakefront retreats or shooting 18 holes at a golf course he spent $1.2 million to help build. Last year his compensation totaled $9.4 million and his net worth rose 30% to about $50 million.
His Corvette stable includes several Indianapolis 500 pace cars and a yellow 1971 roadster once owned by country singer Alan Jackson. "I went down to Tennessee to get this one from Alan," says Mr. Busse. "We sat and had beers and a good time. He didn't sing for me, though."
The $700,000 Corvette museum, located across a parking lot from Steel Dynamics's corporate headquarters, features a jukebox, gas pumps and a replica of a 1950s-era diner counter. Although the collection only draws a handful of visitors each day, Mr. Busse claims it has been a good investment. He has spent about $2 million buying Corvettes, which he believes are now worth about $3.6 million.