How the late Geoffrey Edelsten made his fortune


Geoffrey Edelsten might be best known as a flamboyant, larger-than-life character with expensive taste, but he earned every cent he spent.

Edelsten, 78, died in his Melbourne CBD apartment on Friday. Victoria Police said a man’s body was found in the St Kilda Road home and the death was not being treated as suspicious.

A report will be prepared for the coroner.

Edelsten, who spent the last decades of his life accompanied by much younger women including Brynne Edelsten and Gabi Grecko, spent big on luxury items but did not always have money.

He started in medicine in the mid-1960s but did not turn a sizeable profit until two decades later thanks to an idea that revolutionised the way people accessed medical help.

RELATED: How Geoffrey Edelsten made his fortune

RELATED: Inside Geoffrey Edelsten’s colourful relationships

Having worked as a resident at Royal Melbourne Hospital, he moved into general practice medicine in rural NSW.

He and a friend launched a company in Sydney in the early 1970s and, while the idea behind Preventicare was revolutionary, it did not take off like he had hoped.

In 1984, Edelsten introduced what has been described as a “slick” new look to medical clinics. His clinics offered bulk-billing and 24-hour-a-day service and many were decked out with luxurious items including pianos and chandeliers.

Edelsten made headlines regularly — most notably when he was deregistered from medicine in NSW and Victoria for unconventional medical practices. He was also jailed in 1990 for paying a hitman to assault a former patient.

Despite the controversies he was said to be worth as much as $100 million at one point.

The colourful GP later founded Allied Medical Group with a business partner in the 2000s.

But in 2014, he admitted to blowing the bulk of his fortune — as much as $63 million in two years — thanks to “stupid” investments.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported at the time that Edelsten claimed to have only $90 cash when filed for bankruptcy in the US.

The report noted that Edelsten claimed to have “squandered” all $28 million from the sale of four medical centres in 2011.

He also launched a website called Australia’s Worst Journalist, which consisted of unflattering stories about himself.

Edelsten’s high-rolling lifestyle, which included a fleet of Rolls-Royces, also led him to relationships with younger women.

He met and married his first wife, model Leanne Nesbitt, in the 1980s. In 2009, he met fitness instructor Brynne Gordon on a blind date in Las Vegas and married her within months.

Contacted for comment on Friday evening, her agent told “It is with great sadness to hear of the passing of Dr Geoffrey Edelsten today.

“On behalf of Ms Brynne Edelsten, we send our deepest and sincerest condolences.

“Brynne and Geoffrey enjoyed some truly beautiful moments, including their wedding which saw Brynne call Australia home since their wedding back in 2009.

“While their marriage ended after 5 years together, Brynne remains grateful for the good times the couple had shared together and is deeply saddened and shocked to hear the news of his passing.”

Brynne, who was 25 when she met Edelsten on a blind date in Las Vegas, married the multi-millionaire in style. Their lavish wedding on November 29, 2009 would be spoken about for years to come

The pair, who had a 41-year age gap, raised eyebrows with their jaw-droppingly lavish nuptials which cost a staggering $3.3 million at Melbourne’s Crown Casino, believed to be Australia’s most expensive wedding.

In an interview with Stellar magazine, Brynne said she never married for money.

After splitting, Edelsten was linked to model and fashion designer Gabi Grecko, who is 46 years his junior. They married on June 11, 2015.

Edelsten and Grecko became engaged in November, 2014 after he proposed to her during the Melbourne Cup at Flemington Racecourse.

Edelsten, who became the first private owner of the Sydney Swans AFL club, also had strong links to Carlton.

Former Swans and Blues player Greg Williams told 3AW on Friday evening: “He was a great man, Geoffrey.

“People had an opinion of him but he was a lot different than the actual opinion. He was a great guy with a great heart and he loved the Swans even though he barracked for Carlton.

“He loved football and he couldn’t have looked after me any better than he did.

“I loved Dr Edelsten. All the blokes who played for the Swans I’m sure there’s great memories there.”


Read More: How the late Geoffrey Edelsten made his fortune