If there’s something you will notice about companies and businesses is that on many occasions, their names come from their founders, and when it comes to Michael Dell’s one, it isn’t the exception.
You sure must know Dell Computer Corporation and the fact it is one of the top ones in the USA and worldwide. However, you probably didn’t know about its founder and owner, who is someone quite prominent in the entrepreneurship world (as you would expect).
Michael Dell has made history several times, and if there’s someone who can teach you that college isn’t everything (warning: we still recommend it) and that you should follow your instincts, that’s definitely him.
Let’s learn about him, how he made his fortune, and why you should take him as a great example of overcoming obstacles and finally deciding to bet for you and your ideas.
Knowing the Brain Behind Dell – Early Years
Michael Saul Dell was born in Houston, Texas, on February 23, 1965. His parents, Lorraine Charlotte and Alexander Dell were a stockbroker and orthodontist, respectively.
Michael was raised in a Jewish home, and since very young, he wanted to enter the business world, leading him at eight years old to take a high school equivalency exam.
His hobbies included investing in stocks or precious metals using money he earned from part-time work as a teenager. Michael was seven years old when he bought a calculator and saw an early teletype terminal in high school.
After years of playing with computers at his local Radio Shack, he bought his first computer by the age of 15, which was an Apple II, and quickly disassembled it to learn how it worked.
Michael made his living as a dishwasher during his teens and sold subscriptions to local newspapers.
Something anyone can notice while reading his story is that he loved computers and business. However, his parents insisted that he should become a doctor.
This is why in 1983, Dell accepted his parents’ wishes and entered pre-med at Texas University. He continued selling subscriptions to “Houston Post” during his summer.
He eventually made $200,000 per annum from this business opportunity. Seeing how good he was doing without even working properly in a business, at 19 years old, he dropped college to pursue a career in entrepreneurship.
Career & Businesses: Becoming a Billionaire
Many would believe that a 19 years old boy wouldn’t have success. However, what have we learned about entrepreneurs and somewhat geniuses? That age doesn’t matter.
In January 1984, Dell started to work on his conviction that the potential cost savings of a manufacturer selling PCs directly had enormous advantages over the conventional indirect retail channel.
This is why Dell registered its company “PC’s Limited” in January 1984 that first started operating out of a condominium. The business sold over $60k worth of PC upgrades, kits, and add-on components despite all odds.
With the growth of the business and how Michael had a broader vision, Dell Computer Corporation was formed in May of the same year, and he decided to move the business to North Austin.
At the age of 27, he became the youngest chief executive officer of a company listed in Fortune magazine’s Top 500 Corporations List.
Dell also began selling computers via the Internet in 1996, the year that his company launched its first servers. Not long after, the company reported approximately $1 million in sales per day from dell.com.
Thanks to this milestone, Dell Inc. surpassed Compaq to become a top-ranked PC maker. The new metric marked the beginning of a shift in the rankings over the past seven years.
The company’s total shipments of servers, notebooks, and desktops increased by 34.3% globally and 30.7% in the United States. This was at a time when sales were declining for competitors and making Dell Inc. a company everyone feared.
Dell established MSD Capital LP, a company to manage his family’s investments in 1998. Private equity activities and real estate are some of the investment options in the company, which employs 80 people with offices in New York and Santa Monica.
On March 4, 2004, Michael decided to leave the CEO position, but he remained chairman of Dell Inc.’s board. Kevin Rollins, who was then president and COO, became CEO and president. However, Dell had to come back in 2007 as a CEO due to the board’s request.
In 2003, Michael Dell, with the help of Silver Lake Partners, Microsoft, and a consortium of lenders, took Dell Inc. private. The deal, which was estimated to be worth $25 billion, faced some difficulties during execution. However, it became possible, and Michael was provided 75% of the stakes.
In September 2016, Dell Inc. acquired the enterprise software and storage company EMC Corporation. It is the most valuable tech acquisition ever made, valued at $67 billion.
Michael Dell’s Net Worth: Inside His Bank Account
Well, here we are again, talking about not only millions but billions of dollars and wishing we had at least 0,0001% of those billionaires’ earnings (even less is enough).
Now, we are not saying this as people who truly envy what they have but rather admire how much they have worked to own their businesses and have all those billions.
This is why Michael Dell is more than just a man with a lot of money; he is someone who inspires you to do better and aim for more.
However, we are talking about his net worth in this section, and it is only natural for us to cover this. So, where should we start?
According to Forbes, his net worth peaks at $51.3 billion, and there has been a huge increase since 2020, considering that it was at $22.9 billion.
Is all this money from Dell Inc. only? Or is there more than just this computer company for the magnate?
Michael Dell has made a significant amount of his wealth by investing in real estate. Of course, although this was thanks to the beginning and success of his company, we have to divide all his net worth so you can understand how it works in terms of all the money.
Some properties are intended for investment, while others are meant for Michael’s personal use.
His most memorable purchase was in 2014 when he bought a penthouse in Manhattan’s Billionaire’s Row. It cost over $100 million and was New York’s most costly home at the time.
He purchased a penthouse in Boston, Massachusetts, for $40 million as well. In Los Cabos, Mexico, another property was acquired and put on the market for $18.5 million since Michael considered it only an investment.
Michael built a home of 33,000 square feet in Austin for his family. The home has eight bedrooms, a gym, and an indoor lap pool. In addition, Dell and his wife have several lots that are adjacent to the property. This means that the entire compound covers approximately 120 acres.
Many believe Michael is only dedicated to computers and software. However, he set up a shop on the Big Island of Hawaii’s Kohala coast in 2004 after MSD Capital bought the Four Seasons Maui.
Other properties are included among his investments, being most of them for businesses instead of personal use. However, it is almost impossible to know all of them considering that information isn’t disclosed (which is understandable):
Now, you’re probably wondering that this doesn’t complete the entire explanation of his fortune and how he continues to make money.
Well, it is only logical that most of his net worth comes from the companies.
MSD Capital is owned by Michael Dell alone, and thanks to this, he owns 65% of MSD Partners. Together, they manage more than $16 billion in assets thanks to businesses in hotels and restaurants.
Considering that in 2003, Dell Inc. was privatized for $25 billion and Michael owns a 75% stake, you can see where a high percentage of the money comes from.
However, it is true that the company went public in 2018 but not without leaving him lots of income.
With his purchase of EMC Corp. in 2015 for $67 million, he was able to create Dell Technologies, the largest private technology company worldwide, which is 2016 generated $74 billion.
Does He Give Back? Dell’s Impact on Society
If there’s something we admire about Michael, he is always trying to help people alongside his wife, Susan Dell.
This is why in 1999, they decided to found the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation, which focuses on helping children with their health, urban education, and family economic stability.
Many people can request this financing despite the terms you would expect from one like this, which is why many consider Dell’s foundation one of the best for childhood care and goals.
By 2010, the foundation had committed over $650 million to children in Africa, the USA, and India to guarantee a great education and community initiatives for a better life.
One of the biggest donations of the foundation was in 2012 when it donated $50 million for medical education alone.
Is money everything Michael has done for people?
Many would argue that money isn’t everything and although we agree, it does help a lot and we have to admit that over 80% of our problems are around it.
However, to answer the question, this isn’t Dell’s only contribution. In 2016, the Dell Medical School at the University of Texas in Austin started enrolling people for the career, providing great opportunities for financing the best students and some in difficulties.
In 2020, he and his wife donated $100 million to support small businesses and individuals fighting and surviving against COVID-19. Part of this money was destined to help find treatment as well.
Since then, the entrepreneur has presumptively supported several charities and communities with COVID-19 efforts to eradicate the virus and guarantee fewer people are being affected by it.
What Can We Learn from Dell?
The first thing that sticks to our mind? The fact that he gave up the idea his parents had for him and followed his own.
Usually, we forget to trust and live for ourselves. As a result, we end up doing things that we probably don’t like but aren’t as good as our ideas could have been, which many people never know.
This is why we like to encourage you and everyone else to give it a try. Do you have a business idea? It is never too late.
Do you want to start but don’t know how or in what? Start looking! Who knows, you could be the next Michael Dell in a few years, and you would never know unless you get out of that box and comfort zone.
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Before you ask, no, it isn’t about the traditional real estate in which you buy properties, remodel them, and resell in the end. It is something very similar that follows the same idea instead.
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How can you do it, though? It is quite simple:
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How to Become a Digital Real Estate Agent
If there’s something we love about this option, you don’t need to go to college, invest lots of money, or learn many things.
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