Entrepreneurs are known for being able to focus on one thing to the point of making it a reality. Entrepreneurs are also known for their ability to recognize business opportunities when they come. These two qualities can be at odds with each other: focusing on one thing while looking around for more opportunities contradicts itself.
For many new entrepreneurs there is a real dilemma here. Should you start a lot of companies, or should you focus your whole life on one, like Zuckerberg?
A quick look at billionaire entrepreneurs reveals that most of them are serial entrepreneurs.
Our friends at Funders and Founders came up with this great infographic.
Some interesting facts that came forward from the study:
- This year, there are 1426 billionaires in the world, according to Forbes.
- 960 of them are self-made, while the rest inherited their wealth.
- 830 of them made money from more than one business, while 130 derive their wealth from one business.
- Sheldon Adelson became a billionaire after building a casino in Macau, China, and taking the company public. This transaction alone increased his wealth 14 times making him the third-richest American at the time.
- Eric Lefkofsky owned 22% of Groupon at the time it went public at $12.8 billion valuation. Thus Lefkofsky’s net worth was over $2 billion.
- Mark Cuban was one of the co-founders of Broadcast.com, acquired by Yahoo! for $5.6 billion, a transaction that most likely made him a billionaire. In 2011, Cuban was No. 459 on Forbes Billionaire list, with a net worth of $2.3 billion.
- Elon Musk first became prominent as one of the co-founders of PayPal. When PayPal was sold to eBay for $1.5 billion, Musk owned 11.2% of the company, making him a multi-millionaire. He later became a billionaire, when the stock of Tesla Motors, a company he took public in 2010, rose 3 times. He owns a 32% stake in Tesla, which is valued at $5.82 billion, as of August 2013.
- Richard Branson most likely became a billionaire from his airline business that includes Virgin Atlantic (founded in 1984), Virgin Australia(former Virgin Blue), and Virgin America. His second major income source was his record business, that he sold for $900 million in 1992.
Self-Made Billionaire Serial Entrepreneurs
|Entrepreneur||Net Worth 2013|
|Richard Branson||$4.6 B||@richardbranson|
|Mark Cuban||$2.4 B||@mcuban|
|Sheldon Adelson||$26.5 B|
|Eric Lefkovsky||$1.1 B||@lefkofsky|
|Elon Musk||$2.7 B||@elonmusk|
So what do you guys think is the best way to go forward – a single big idea or try many ideas? Do tell us what you think.