Meet Billionaire Larry Connor Who Plans to Take Submersible to Titanic

Meet Billionaire Larry Connor Who Plans to Take Submersible to Titanic

Larry Connor.
Axiom Space

  • Billionaire Larry Connor will travel to the Titanic shipwreck site in a two-person submersible.
  • Connor’s voyage comes after OceanGate’s submersible imploded in June 2023.
  • Connor is a thrill-seeker who set a world record jumping from a hot air balloon.

An Ohio billionaire who’s flown to space and explored the Mariana Trench has set his sights on a new adventure: the Titanic shipwreck.

Real estate investor Larry Connor, 74, will take the ocean voyage with Patrick Lahey, cofounder and CEO of Triton Submarines. The submersible manufacturer confirmed their collaboration in a May Instagram post, calling it “groundbreaking.”

The pair told The Wall Street Journal in May that they would travel to the Titanic wreck site to prove it can be done safely after last year’s OceanGate tragedy.

OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush and four other passengers died after the company’s Titan submersible imploded on the way to the Titanic shipwreck site.

“I want to show people worldwide that while the ocean is extremely powerful, it can be wonderful and enjoyable and really kind of life-changing if you go about it the right way,” Connor told the outlet.

Even before announcing his deep-ocean ambitions, Connor has sought thrills on land and in Earth’s orbit.

Here’s what we know about Connor.

Connor is a real estate investor who founded The Connor Group, which has $5 billion in assets.

Aerial view of Miami, Florida, where The Connor Group has properties.
Cliff Hawkins – FIFA/Getty Images

Connor’s entrepreneurial mindset led him to the real estate industry in 1991, when he launched Connor, Murphy, and Buhrman with only one investor, according to his company bio.

He later bought out his partners and, in 2003, created the luxury real estate investment firm The Connor Group, which is based in Ohio.

He has a $2 billion net worth, according to Forbes.

The firm’s website says The Connor Group specializes in luxury apartment communities with more than $5 billion in assets in 18 US markets.

The Connor Group — with over 1,300 investors — has properties in Atlanta, Chicago, Charlotte, Miami, Phoenix, Louisville, and more.

He founded The Greater Dayton School.

The Greater Dayton School educates children from Pre-K to 8th grade.
FatCamera/Getty Images

The Greater Dayton School is described as “Ohio’s first non-religious private school for under-resourced students” on The Connor Group’s website. The official campus opened for students in November 2023, according to the school’s website.

The school’s website said 105 children were enrolled in Pre-K through fourth grade as of October 2023.

Connor is also passionate about racing and has over 70 wins.

Larry Connor is an accomplished racer.
Robert Laberge/Getty Images

Connor’s bio said he’s a “two-time winner of the Baja 1000 and Baja 500 in the Trophy Truck Spec class.”

He also claimed first place at the Formula Atlantic National Championship in 2001 and 2002 before emerging victorious at the Petit Le Mans in 2003, his bio says.

Connor visited Mariana Trench, the deepest known place on Earth, in April 2021.

The Mariana Trench.
Dimitrios Karamitros/Getty Images

Connor’s upcoming voyage to the Titanic shipwreck site won’t be his first time traveling with Lahey.

The pair completed dives to the Sirena Deep, the Challenger Deep, and a seamount in the Mariana Trench over five days in April 2021, according to The Connor Group.

Connor and Lahey used the Triton 36000/2 designed by Triton Submarines. A press release from Triton Submarines said Connor and Lahey “gathered high-quality video footage and samples in the ‘hadal zone,’ or the area of the ocean below 20,000 ft. — the final frontier of exploration on Earth.”

Scientists planned to study the information Connor and Lahey gathered on their trip for medical, commercial, and evolutionary research.

He piloted a flight to the International Space Station one year later.

The International Space Station (ISS).

Connor became the first private astronaut pilot in April 2022 when he flew members of Axiom Mission 1 to the International Space Station, his firm says. The four-person crew flew aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon spaceship on April 8 and returned to Earth on April 25.

NASA and aerospace startup Axiom Space first announced the flight in May 2021.

“While on board the ISS, the crew completed 25 different experiments, logging over 100 hours of research,” a press release from The Connor Group read. “Larry partnered with renowned medical experts at Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic on four different experiments to study the heart, brain, spine and aging.”

He made a world-record jump from a hot air balloon in September 2023.

Larry Connor broke a world record HALO skydiving.
AscentXmedia/Getty Images

Connor and four other men hold the Guinness World Record for the highest HALO — high altitude, low opening — formation skydive at 38,139 feet. The crew set the record in September 2023.

“Larry and the Alpha-5 Team prepared for over one year to make the HALO formation skydive. They jumped from a hot air balloon and made the jump to support the Special Operations Warfare Foundation (SOWF) charity,” the Guinness World Record website says.

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