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Billionaire media mogul Byron Allen has purchased a Malibu estate previously owned by self-storage magnate Tammy Hughes Gustavson for $100 million, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The transaction marks one of the priciest deals made yet in the U.S. in 2022 and is the most an African American buyer has ever paid for a home in the U.S.

The home, which is located in Paradise Cove and spans about 11,000 square feet, was listed in May for $127.5 million. It sits on a 3.5-acre lot on a bluff overlooking the Pacific, and is immediately next to WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum’s $190 million estate.

Allen began his career as a comedian and then founded Entertainment Studios/Allen Media Group, one of the largest privately held media companies in the U.S., which owns 12 cable networks, about 70 TV shows and about 30 ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox affiliates across the U.S. His company also owns the Weather Channel.

Over the years, he has acquired trophy properties in Aspen, New York, Maui and Beverly Hills, according to The Wall Street Journal’s sources.

B. Wayne Hughes, Gustavson’s late father and founder of self-storage company Public Storage, previously owned the Malibu estate. According to records, he purchased the property for about $20 million in 2003.

The mansion includes eight beds and 11.5 baths, a private terrace with ocean views, 208 feet of beach frontage, a tennis court and two detached guesthouses, according to the listing description. Pocketed glass doors throughout the main residence open out to the terrace, providing ocean views from indoors and a light-filled interior. It also features a winding path from the estate down to the beach, so that a golf cart can be used to transport people from one location to the other.

Malibu has seen a number of high-end real estate transactions in the past few years, including a number of estates purchased by venture capitalist Marc Andreessen and his wife, Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen, for a combined value of about $255.5 million. Likewise, reality TV star Kim Kardashian recently purchased a property in the area for about $70 million.

Jade Mills of Coldwell Banker represented the seller and Terence Hill of BT Equities, who is an in-house agent with Allen’s family office, represented the buyer.

In addition to growing his media empire, Allen has taken up a cause to fight racial discrimination through a series of lawsuits in recent years.

In 2015, he sued Comcast for not carrying Allen’s stations and networks because of racial discrimination (the case made it to the Supreme Court, but was settled outside of court), and most recently, Allen served a $10 billion lawsuit against McDonald’s for racial stereotyping and deliberately not buying a fair share of advertising from Black-owned media. That case will go to trial in May 2023.

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Email Lillian Dickerson

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