Serial Billion Dollar Company Builders

Someone recently asked me for a recommendation–either a book or course on strategy.

A lot of my favorite reading comes from reading about topics that interest me, people I admire, and experiments in business. I think most books and courses aren’t a good use of time since you probably only remember 5% of what you read. For instance, I found myself skimming the childhood portion of Steve Jobs’ biography by Isaacson to get the parts that discussed business.

I like studying anyone who achieved significant success. Elon Musk is probably the best living example of someone who has done it repeatedly. The following is another list of people who have built more than one company valued at over one billion dollars:

  • Steve Jobs (Apple and Pixar)
  • Elon Musk (Paypal, Space X, Tesla)
  • Ken Xie (Fortinet and Juniper)
  • Jack Dorsey (Twitter and Squareup)
  • Richard Branson (several Virgin brands)

Apple's Sales: Best Evidence That China is a Lucrative Consumer Market

According to Apple’s latest earnings report, Apple generated sales of $12.4B in 6 months.  Techcrunch has some solid infographics about this at
Backing up images just in case:
Asia Pacific went from 22.1% of sales to 29.2% in 1 year
Cook said in the October earnings call: “For China — the sky’s the limit there. I’ve never seen so many people rise into the middle class who aspire to buy Apple products. It’s quickly become #2 on our list of top revenue countries.”
There are many other international firms doing very well in China including General Motors

Lottery Tickets: Evidence of Widespread Irrational Behavior

Lottery Tickets: Evidence of Widespread Irrational Behavior

Gambling: : Evidence of Widespread Irrational Behavior

Close to 50% of discussions I heard before noon on the night of a  $600M+ lottery draw morning in San Francisco involved the lottery.

This leads to several potential reasons why people buy:

  1. Many people are bad at math (statistics, is a subset of mathematics)
  2. Many people rationalize poor decisions to seek a temporary high (ie. Impulsive, short-term minded behavior)
  3. Many people place far more weight on the upside rather than downside of a situation