Mike Ilitch

An Entrepreneur

About him

Michael Ilitch Sr. was born on July 20, 1929. He grew up in Detroit, Michigan where he graduated from Thomas M. Cooley High School. He currently lives in Bingham Farms, Michigan with his wife, Marian, and children.

Background facts

  • He played for the Detroit Tigers baseball team before an injury cut his career short.
  • He decided he wanted to make pizza after having some from Italy, and opened his pizza place after his injury
  • In 2012, the total combined amount of all his companies was $2.6 billion

Business experience

Over the years he has worked, and become and owner of many places/organizations. He owns Little Caesar Enterprises, Blue Line Foodservice Distribution, Champion Foods, Little Caesars Pizza Kit Fundraising Program, Olympia Entertainment, Uptown Entertainment, Detroit Red Wings, Detroit Tigers and Olympia Development


1959: invested 10,000 life savings to open a single Little Caesars in suburban Detroit

1982: Ilitch purchases Detroit Red Wings Hockey Club

1987: Purchased Fox Theater, restored it to its 1982 style and opened it in 1988

1989: commissioned dramatic renovation of 10-story building, relocated his office staff, and established a new HQ for his pizza company

1992: Ilitch purchases Detroit Tigers baseball team