H. Wayne Huizenga, the entrepreneur who expanded Blockbuster video and AutoNation into vast enterprises and owned three South Florida sports teams, died on Thursday night at his home in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. He was 80.
Bob Henninger, executive vice president of Huizenga Holdings, Mr. Huizenga’s investment vehicle, confirmed the death, saying Mr. Huizenga had long been treated for cancer.
Mr. Huizenga (pronounced HIGH-zing-ah) achieved his first success with the sanitation company Waste Management, which traced its origins to a garbage route he personally drove in 1962.
At the time, he would begin his days before dawn and, once he finished hauling garbage to the dump, would shower and spend the rest of the day meeting with business owners and homeowners in an effort to win contracts.