At 23 years old Mark Cuban rocked up in Dallas in his ’77 Fiat X1/9 and with sixty bucks in his pocket.
With nothing more than a sleeping bag and some old clothes he moved into a three bedroom apartment with five of his buddies.
Thinking back on those days Mark says, “I had nothing. So I had nothing to lose, right? It was all about going for it.”
After working as a bar tender for a short while he found work as a salesman for an early PC software retailer called Your Business Software.
The year was 1982 and software was just coming in at the time.
Mostly banks and similar businesses wanted to go paperless and hired companies like Your Business Software to get them setup.
Mark exhibited an entrepreneurial spirit from the start, networking with the bank managers and other executives selling additional services and chasing every lead.
One day Mark had prioritized meeting with a client trying to sell more software over opening up the store first thing… and was fired later that same day.
So what did he do?
Many would quit demoralized and go back to bar tending. Not Mark though he had been studying and learning this business and was now invested in it.
So he decided to start his own company, called it MicroSolutions and went into business competing with his old boss and company.
And with Mark’s tenacity and constant focus on winning, he quickly surpassed his old workplace closing deals left and right.
You see the thing about Mark and something I have noticed studying many of the top billionaires and super-rich. Is these guys have a continual desire to win and beat out the competition.
Instead of rolling over and playing dead. They strike back hard and fast quickly dominating whatever marketplace they’re in with daring determination and bold courage.
By 1990 Mark Cuban has sold MicroSolutions to CompuServe for $6 million and walked away with about $2 million in his pocket after everything was said and done.
Not bad starting out from just $60, yet Mark wasn’t done yet.
Okay well maybe he was done for a bit because his next “investment” was to buy a $250,000 lifetime-pass on American Airlines… flying around the world on a quest to see as many countries as he could and get drunk with as many people as he could.
And he was good at that too!
Before long though Mark got the entrepreneurial itch and went back into business. The internet was just starting to get big at the time and he wondered why no one was streaming sports games or radio online.
So he setup a company called AudioNet which soon streamed hundreds of sports channels and radio right over the internet.
Something we take for granted nowadays. People log online to listen to sports games all the time now, but back in the day this had never been done before.
By the time Mark was hosting the first online broadcasted Victoria Secret Fashion Show, his new company which had just been renamed Broadcast.com was getting major attention.
And soon was sold to Yahoo! for $5.7 billion, netting Mark a personal profit of $1.7 billion from the deal.
I really like Mark Cuban’s story from zero to billionaire because it shows what can be done with a little tenacity, focus and a desire to win.
Mark’s all about winning.
He sees business as The Sport of Business and plays hard just like the top athletes in any major sports team would.
I also like how you can see that both times Mark struck it rich he did so by applying his focus toward emerging technologies. First software was just coming in, then the internet was beginning to gain traction.
Both times Cuban was there to profit from changes in the marketplace and people accessing things in new ways.
Mark of course also realizes that luck did play a factor in him becoming a billionaire.
I really like this quote from an interview he did with CNBC where he’s talking about what he would do if he lost his billions and had to start over.
“To be a billionaire you’ve got to get lucky. Could I become a multi-millionaire again? I have no doubt.”
This is an important understanding especially for me, you, and the next guy who dreams of becoming a billionaire one day.
The reality is while becoming a billionaire is definitely the overarching big picture vision… Luck is a factor that can’t be ignored.
Now this shouldn’t put you off not even for a second. After all to become a billionaire first you have to become a multi-millionaire.
Can you become a multi-millionaire if you have a BURNING DESIRE and Take Action turning your vision into a reality? I have no doubt.