Money makes more money or so they say, but some people have debunked this myth like no other. Having a rich background is not the sure shot way to success. Many of the world’s richest people lived below the poverty line and in this article, we will highlight ten such individuals.
Number Ten: Kenny Troutt
Kenny Troutt was the son of a bartender and he paid for his college by selling life insurance. Most of his money was made through the phone company Excel Communications that he created in 1988 and then took it public in 1996. He merged it two years later with Teleglobe for $3.5 billion.
Number Nine: Howard Schultz of Starbucks
Schultz grew up in a housing complex that was for poor people and he said in an interview that he often aspired to live like the more privileged lot of the society. He ended up getting a football scholarship in University of Northern Michigan and then went on to work for Xerox. He then took over a coffee shop called Starbucks which has only 60 outlets. He grew this network to 16,000 outlets worldwide.
Number Eight: Ken Langone
Now an investor of a net worth of $2.1 billion, this guy was the son of a plumber and a cafeteria worker. He had to work odd jobs to pay for his studies at Bucknell University and his parents had to mortgage their home. In 1981, he worked with Ross Perot to make HP public, and then started Home Depot with Bernard Marcus which went public in 1981.
Number Seven: Oprah Winfrey
Our favorite TV show host Oprah was born in a poor family in Mississippi but she won a scholarship to Tennessee State University and became the first African American TV correspondent at just 19 years of age. She then worked for the Oprah Winfrey Show in 1983.
Number Six: Shahid Khan
Khan came to the US from Pakistan and while attending the University of Illinois, he worked as a dishwasher for $1.20 an hour. He now owns Flex-N-Gate, Premier League soccer club Fulham and the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars.
Number Five: Kirk Kerkorian
Kirk dropped out of school in eighth grade to help his Armenian immigrant family by becoming a boxer. He was called the “Rifle Right Kerkorian”. He worked for Britain’s Royal Air Force in World War II and later went on to construct some of the biggest resorts and hotels in Las Vegas.
Number Four: John Paul DeJoria
DeJoria sold Christmas cards and newspapers to support his family. He was sent to live in a foster home later and he also joined a gang before he joined the military. He took a $700 loan and created the John Paul Mitchell Systems. He sold shampoo door to door and lived in his car. He also started Patron Tequila.
Number Three: Do Won Chang
Do Won Chang and his wife Jin Sook are behind the clothing giant, Forever 21. Do had to work three jobs: as a janitor, gas station attendant and in a coffee shop before opening their first store in 1984. His net worth is now $5 billion.
Number Two: Ralph Lauren
Ralph dropped out of college to join the army and then worked as a clerk at Brooks Brothers. It was there that he started thinking about whether it’s time that men were ready for wider and brighter ties. The year he started, he sold $500,000 worth of ties and started Polo the next year.
Number One: Francois Pinault – The Richest High School Dropout
Pinault is the mastermind behind the fashion conglomerate Kering but he had to drop out of high school because he was bullied for being poor. Kering now owns fashion houses like Gucci, Alexander McQueen, Stella McCartney and Yves Saint Laurent.