Brant family Greenwich: putting the fun back in “disfunctional”

In response to my post below about Greenwich’s beloved felon, Peter Brant, a reader informs me that there are two Peter Brants, both of whom are ex-cons but the one who got whacked for stock fraud was not the one who lives in Greenwich.

So I’ve been looking further into our Brants and my goodness, they are not a happy bunch. Stephanie’s a pain pill and spending junkie, son Ryan was recently fined $7.3 million by the SEC for his own bit of stock fraud and who knows what else? I’ll do some more digging and report back.

UPDATE: Here’s the federal complaint for tax evasion committed by Peter Brant in 1990. Don’t any of the rich like to pay taxes on their art work?

UPDATE II: now I really feel bad – I made the same mistake the New York Times did.


Published: Saturday, June 9, 1990
    A picture yesterday with an article about Peter M. Brant, who was sentenced to prison for tax evasion in Bridgeport, Conn., was published in error. It showed a different Peter Brant – Peter N. Brant, who was sentenced in 1988 to eight months in prison for insider trading.

Take-Two Interactive designs a very profitable father-and-son game.

Peter M. Brant is a guy who seems to have everything. The NewYork Times called him “a Donald Trump with taste” for his elegant real estate projects. Brant owns trendy magazines like Interview and Art in America. He co-founded the Greenwich (Conn.) Polo Club and is married to former Playboy and Victoria’s Secret model Stephanie Seymour.

One blemish on this stellar curriculum vitae, other than a few polo suspensions for arguing with the umps, is Brant’s guilty plea in 1990 to charges related to tax evasion. It resulted from reportedly having his company pay for $1 million in jet travel, silk sheets, scalp treatments and servants at his Greenwich estate. Brant was sentenced to three months.

Now it turns out he was closely involved in his son Ryan’s business, $1 billion (sales) game maker Take-Two Interactive, which has had its own accounting problems. Ryan founded the maker of Grand Theft Auto in 1993, at age 21.

Little known to investors, Peter was the top shareholder when Take-Two went public in 1997, controlling 25% through Bridgehampton Investors LP, of which Ryan was a general partner. Owning another 31% of Take-Two via Bridgehampton was the profit-sharing plan of Brant-Allen Industries, a company Peter owned with partner Joseph Allen (who pled guilty to the same charges as Brant in 1990). Dad and Ryan seemed to have a nice relationship. Peter earned 14% interest on a $1.6 million note from Take-Two and has been getting $43,000 a month renting Manhattan digs to Take-Two.

Last December the SEC said it would fine the company, Ryan and three others for financial reporting violations. A month later Take-Two said it would restate financials back to 1999. The stock took a hit.

Turns out, in January 1999 Bridgehampton distributed its Take-Two shares to Peter and his profit-sharing plan. Between then and 2003 they unloaded the holdings, reaping $50 million or so, based on Take-Two’s share price in the teens during that period.

Ryan has benefited nicely, selling $20 million of shares between August 1997 and last December that cost him $3 million, Thomson Financial estimates.Take-Two’s shares rebounded in March when Ryan stepped down as chairman and director.

Father, like son, didn’t reply to requests for comment.


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21 responses to “Brant family Greenwich: putting the fun back in “disfunctional”

  1. Krazy Kat


    By any chance you know who rented out the ugly house at Dingletown and North? I hear Steph and kids might be in residence.

    • christopherfountain

      The report shows a “foreign” broker, but that could be a NYC agent, I suppose. I haven’t seen anyone there yet, but let’s ask Scusie.

  2. Anon

    Brant has got to be one of the scummiest characters in town (and these days that’s saying something). I saw in an article that they have had the girl scouts and boy scouts out to the new museum – how charming to think of the scoutmaster explaining why Santa is holding the giant anal dildo. I can’t imagine who, short of Roman Polansky, would think that is appropriate subject matter for little boy and girls.

    Brant is no Donald Trump with taste. I’ve never been a fan of Trump, but comparing him to Brant is a complete insult to Trump.

  3. Old School Grump

    Glad you addressed the Peter Brant confusion, I was getting confused myself. The earlier miscreant was a high producing broker at Kidder Peabody in the 80s. “Kidder Peabody” … it sounds so genteel, so quaint, so … ancient history. Anyway, a certain WSJ reporter I had a grudge against went down in connection with him, which is why I remember stuff so … ancient. I wonder what this other Peter Brant (Brandt?) is up to.

  4. Vineyard Vines

    CF you are jealous that PMB gets some action and you, do not.

    maybe it’s your prudish upbringing.

    Who cares what Peter did in 1990? That’s ancient history. I am sure what you did in the 80s and 90s is nothing to be proud of.

    geez and the most recent article you have is from 5 years ago. :yawn:

  5. Walt

    Dude –
    You are calling the father and son? What the frig is wrong with you? Call Stephanie, you dim bulb. Think about it. You can talk to a Bud Abbott look alike, or a Godess. And you chose who?
    You loser.
    Your Pal,

  6. Chimney

    The last I heard, and that was several years ago, Kidder’s Peter Brant was selling real estate in Wellington, FL. With the current Florida real estate market he’s probably now driving a cab. Isn’t that a strange coincidence that both PBs are polo players?

  7. Son of the Original One and Only BackCountryGal

    I don’t profess to channel my mother’s spirit but I can assure you she wouldn’t like all the threads lately that are so off topic. She “got” all your jokes (unlike Greenwich Gal), appreciated all your wisdom, added her two cents when she felt qualified, but never one to take advantage of other people failings, she would be angry at you for taking potshots. I read your blog daily as a gesture to my mother’s favorite pastime, but honestly, it’s hard to get beyond all the edginess.

  8. Greenwich Gal

    Gee, tough crowd. I get most of the jokes – I mean some just aren’t funny, you know…sorry CF, self defense.

  9. Greenwich Gal

    Also – do want to mention that I, for one, love the gossipy content of this rag, er, blog. I mean dry boring real estate has really limited entertainment value – and there is all this – the Brandts, Noels, etc – right under our nose! You just can’t make this stuff up. That being said, I think Mr. Peter got what he paid for in Stephanie Seymour. Marrying Stephanie would be like buying a Jaguar. Looks great, sleek and shiny – but low performance value. After all, this is a gal who chose AXL ROSE as a boyfriend!

  10. Waffler

    Gossipy content is okay by me for the most part, especially because it is All Greenwich All the Time. Maybe what “Son of” meant was that it can get a little blistery….. but as GG said, you can’t make this stuff up. I walk the fence on this discussion, agreeing with “Son of” in theory, but realizing GG is likely more correct….. that real estate can be dry…. and hey, let’s have fun here.

  11. Cos Cobber

    We have an unending supply of frauds and uber rich nutjobs in the town. We never seem to have much more than a 6 month lull before a new ugly story emerges.

    In light of these stories, I imagine Greenwich sounds like a complete zany hellhole to out of towners. Thats too bad, because daily living in this place really is not that nutz for most of us more regular types. You just go to work, play with the kids, visit family, take a vacation, maybe buy some adult toys with your extra coin (boat, ski house, car), serve on a PTA, etc. You mind your business and maybe you mind your neighbors business and thats about it. Many of us actually dont consort with felons or the sexual deviants; knowingly or unknowingly.

  12. Cal

    Something tells me that Stephanie is not the sharpest tool in the shed.

  13. Greenwich Gal

    Yes, for the most part Greenwich is full of hardworking, successful, good citizens. But is it always fun to have a felon or Page Six type show up at the Christmas party, n’est-ce pas?

  14. Old School Grump

    I’ll bet out- of-towners don’t have to know or care about local “personalities” to get a kick out of this blog; they just have to look at the posts with photos that show how little house you get for your money in the $750 to $1.5 million range (aka an expensive house to most people) to have a good laugh and conclude ALL Greenwich homebuyers are nut jobs.

    Changing the subject, I would like to make a motion that CF be asked to cease and desist from using the words “butt plug” at least in the posts’ headlines. Lordy, child, what kind of weekend did you have?

  15. Anon

    OSG – that is the formal name of the artwork – Santa with Butt Plug. Why should CF not use the name?

    Perhaps we should see what alternative names readers would prefer. How about Kris Kringle’s Anal Dildo?

  16. Cos Cobber

    Old School, we’ve been down this road before. An attack on greenwich housing prices in the sub 1.5m market is an attack on all of Westchester and Fairfield county. It doesnt get much cheaper, property tax & income tax adjusted, in all the neighboring towns that are worthwhile. Meanwhile, gwich has much more to offer than those other locales.

    If you are saying you are a fool in live in the upscale towns of Westchester or Fairfield county, then I agree, you got me. At times I’d rather be in the mtn west myself.

  17. Old School Grump

    CC at 11:33, I didn’t mean to attack. I lived in Greenwich in a house at the low end of that price range for seven years; we chose because it was all around a far better choice than anything we saw in Rye, Larchmont, Mamaroneck, etc; I “get it.” My point was how bizarre it must seem to readers who haven’t sampled the joys of living and working in the Northeast Corridor.

    Anon at 11:17, I can’t really defend myself here, can only say I’m old, old school, and grumpy, so extended discussions of butt plugs (in any context) alarm me!