Billionaire Wisdom: 10 inspiring quotes from the world’s most successful entrepreneurs

The world’s richest billionaires come from varied backgrounds, industries, generations and countries.

They’re tech entrepreneurs, a fashion magnate, probably the world’s savviest ever investor, a pioneering industrialist and a space-watching Twitter hot head – hi Elon.

What sets them apart, however, is their canny ability to make money. They’re not just good at it, they’re the best in the world at it. Possibly ever. From pioneering inventions to repeated shrewd business moves they’re billionaires for a reason.

Can we learn anything from them? Without a doubt.

Check out these pearls of wisdom from the world’s top 10 richest billionaires.

10) Sergey Brin

The computer scientist and Google co-founder is famed for creating a culture of innovation, experimentation and developing creative technology on his way to an $80.5bn fortune. The secret? Not being confined by rules, apparently.

“Too many rules stifle innovation.”

S.Brin

9) Mukesh Ambani

The chairman of Reliance Industries has interest in telecoms, retail, oil and gas and petrochemicals.

And he just bought Dubai’s most expensive private villa ever. FOR THE SECOND TIME.

How did he turn this into an $83.9bn fortune? Hard work. Lots of hard work. 

“It is important to remember that there are no overnight successes. You will need to be dedicated, single-minded, and there is no substitute to hard work.”

M. Ambani

Larry Page, billionaire Google founder

8) Larry Page

How do you make $84bn and become one of the world’s richest billionaires? It sounds counterintuitive, but the Google co-founder says money motivation is not the way.

“If we were motivated by money, we would have sold the company a long time ago and ended up on a beach.”

L. Page

Larry Ellison

7) Larry Ellison

Larry Ellison gave up the CEO role at Oracle nearly 10 years ago, after 37 years at the helm. Still the CTO and owner of about 35% of the company he knows the importance of being different in the boardroom and the marketplace. An $87.4bn bank balance proves him right. 

“If you do everything that everyone else does in business, you’re going to lose. The only way to really be ahead is to ‘be different’.”

L.Ellison

Warren Buffett

6) Warren Buffet

The former chewing gum and door-to-door salesman has come a long way and made many billions. $95.5bn to be precise. His best rule for aspiring billionaires – don’t lose money. Simple.

“Rule No. 1 is never lose money. Rule No. 2 is never forget Rule No. 1.”

W.Buffet

Bill Gates

5) Bill Gates

Software developer and Microsoft founder Gates has spent much of the past thirty years recognised as one of the world’s richest billionaires and is now a leading philanthropist with a personal net worth estimated at $99.8bn. Follow his advice and learn more from setbacks than success. 

“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning”.

B.Gates

Gautam Adani

4) Gautam Adani

Port development business leader and industrialist Gautam Adani thinks long-term vision over short-term profit is a key characteristic of a leader. It is a belief that has carried him to a $124.4bn fortune. 

“I am not attracted to those politicians who are short on vision and only want to make money. I like those who have vision.”

G.Adani

Jeff Bezos

3) Jeff Bezos

Shopkeeper and online retail mogul Bezos has built Amazon into an all-conquering online shopping giant with a personal net worth estimated at $130.4bn. How? Building a reputation. 

“A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.”

J.Bezos

Bernard Arnault

2) Bernard Arnault

Growth, growth, growth. If it is good enough for luxury goods specialist Bernard Arnault and his family then it is good enough for any aspiring entrepreneur or lesser billionaires. It has taken the Arnault family to an estimated $147.8bn.

“The goal of a start-up is not to stay a start-up. The goal of a start-up is to grow and to become, if possible, a large company.”

B.Arnault

Elon Musk is the world's richest billionaire

1) Elon Musk

A personal fortune of $207.7bn, Tesla and SpaceX optimistic for the future the world hanging on his every tweet and the title of the world’s richest man. It is fair to say Elon Musk knows a thing or two about making money. As the quote shows he has a single-minded determination to go his own way.

“If something is important enough, even if the odds are against you, you should still do it.”

E.Musk


This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of overwrite.ai and its owners.

This story has been published from an article published online in Arabian Business on 16th October 2022, without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.


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The stock market’s biggest ‘unicorn’ failure

Investors have rained cash on Uber, Airbnb and other unprofitable companies.

Any one of these 15 money-losing companies could become the stock market’s biggest ‘unicorn’ failure ever.

David Rush holds a Guinness world record for cramming 100 candles into his mouth and lighting them. 

Sandeep Singh Kaila spun a basketball on a toothbrush for a record 1 minute and 8.15 seconds. Neville Sharp emitted a 112.4 decibel burp.

If those zany stunts can make it into the Guinness Book of World Records, there should be a category for something really important — the world’s biggest startup company failure.

There is certainly no shortage of contenders for this dubious honor.

Before 2015, the biggest bankruptcies (by funding) were Solyndra ($1.2 billion), Abound Solar ($614 million), and Better Place ($675 million). 

WebVan got a lot of publicity when it received $275 million in venture capital funding and failed in 2001 after three years of operation. More recently, Theranos received $500 million in venture capital funding and was a well-publicized disaster, with CEO Elizabeth Holmes and president Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani both convicted of multiple counts of fraud.

Those failures are large, but the cumulative losses of many startups that have not yet gone bankrupt are orders of magnitude larger. 

The table below shows the funds raised by the 15 biggest money-losing startups in the U.S. Cumulatively they raised $93.8 billion in startup funds and have lost $135.1 billion.

Only one of these 15 companies has ever had a profitable quarter — Airbnb had a $378 million profit on $2.1 billion in revenue in the second quarter of 2022. 

All of the other startups in the table have recent losses that exceed 10% of revenue and most exceed 30%.

Any hopeful arguments that profitability is just around the corner ring hollow when every company is at least nine years old and two are more than 20 years old. 

At some point, investors will say, “Enough is enough” and realize that it is a sunk-cost fallacy to throw good money after bad.

Eleven of the 15 companies in the table have raised more money than was raised by any bankrupt startup. 

The two biggest losers so far are Uber and WeWork.

So far, Uber has cumulative losses of $31.7 billion and WeWork $20.7 billion, with no end in sight. Uber’s stock price is down about 35% from its 52-week high. WeWork is down 71% and is now officially a penny stock.

Losses have to be financed and it is increasingly difficult for these companies to do so. 

Uber has cumulative losses of $31.7 billion  and WeWork $20.7 billion. Most of these so-called unicorn startups have seen their share prices fall more than 50% in the past year, and many of these stocks are down more than 90%. 

Most of these so-called unicorn startups have seen their share prices fall more than 50% in the past year, and many of these stocks are down more than 90%. WeWork isn’t the only unicorn turning into a penny stock.

These stock-price declines will make it increasingly difficult and expensive to issue more stock in order to raise funds to cover ongoing losses. Meanwhile, rising interest rates are increasing the cost of servicing existing debt and making it difficult and expensive to issue even more debt.

Many unicorns will surely soon go bankrupt or be acquired at fire-sale prices. A failure of Uber or WeWork would be 10 times larger than the previous records for lost venture-capital funding.

A wave of unicorn failures would send tremors through financial markets, but it is unlikely that the federal government would use a “too-big-too-fail” excuse to intervene.

Although the startups in the table are U.S. companies, unicorn startups in other countries have similar problems: European startups (Delivery Hero DHER, -0.90%, Deliveroo ROO, –2.44%, and Wise WISE, -0.78% ); Chinese ones (Didi DIDIY, -5.50%, Kuaishou 1024, -3.44%, Billi Billi , and Pinduoduo PDD, -2.60% ); Indian ones (Ola , Paytm , and Zomato 543320, -1.29% ), and Singaporean ones (Grab and SEA ) also have multi-billion dollar cumulative losses. 

New records among unicorn companies will likely soon be set all over the world — but they won’t be as benign as records for candle stuffing, basketball spinning, and burping.


This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of overwrite.ai and its owners.

Jeffrey Lee Funk and Gary Smith writes for Market Watch.

This story has been published from an article on 14th September 2022, without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.


For informative and light-hearted news and views on the world of real estate, follow overwrite.ai on Instagram and LinkedIn, and keep up-to-date with our weekly NewsBites blog.


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