Thursday, October 02, 2008

Words from the wise: Investments tips from self-made billionaires...

The editors of the venerable Forbes Magazine have compiled their annual "Secrets of the Self-Made" coverage, where this year 17 self-made billionaires responded to questions ranging from the ho-hum to the pretty darned interesting. If readers were invited into this Q&A process, especially considering the current financial crisis, I'm sure the questions would have been much more compelling. However, since most of the subjects probably wouldn't be too interested in participating in that type of forum, we can consider ourselves lucky to have access to what you can find in the story. I recommend checking-out the coverage in full for more details, but in the meantime, below, some of these gentlemen tell us how they would invest $100,000... while others evade the question, likely displaying the skills that made them rich in the first place. Enjoy!

John Catsimatidis
Net Worth: $2.1 billion
Age: 60
Source of Wealth: Oil, real estate, supermarkets
Answer: "Energy."

Leon Charney
Net Worth: $1.5 billion
Age: 67
Source of Wealth: Real estate
Answer: "Invest in medical technology."

John Paul DeJoria
Net Worth: $3.5 billion
Age: 64
Source of Wealth: Hair products, tequila
Answer: "$25K into alternative energy companies, $25K into blue-chips companies, 25K into precious metals and $25K into my children's educational accounts."

Tom Golisano
Net Worth: $1.7 billion
Age: 66
Source of Wealth: Paychex
Answer: "I'm not telling you."

Michael Heisley
Net Worth: $2.1 billion
Age: 71
Source of Wealth: Manufacturing
Answer: "Alternative energy technology."

R.J. Kirk
Net Worth: $1.6 billion
Age: 54
Source of Wealth: Pharmaceuticals
Answer: "I would buy stock in Clinical Data and Halozyme Therapeutics, two companies with which I am involved. Those are the two investments that my girlfriend made."

Ted Lerner
Net Worth: $3.5 billion
Age: 82
Source of Wealth: Real estate
Answer: "Buy some ground."

Rob Maguire
Net Worth: $1.4 billion
Age: 73
Source of Wealth: Real estate
Answer: "I can usually come up with successful ways to invest my money at pleasantly high returns."

Seth Merrin
Net Worth: $1.3 billion
Age: 48
Source of Wealth: Liquidnet
Answer: "I would invest in the future of Africa by sending it to the Agahozo Shalom Youth Village we are building to house and educate the orphans of the Rwandan genocide."

Ron Perelman
Net Worth: $11.5 billion
Age: 65
Source of Wealth: Leveraged buyouts
Answer: "Today? T-Bill."

Jorge Perez
Net Worth: $1.3 billion
Age: 59
Source of Wealth: Condos
Answer: "Buy undervalued real estate during these depressed times."

Wilbur L. Ross
Net Worth: $1.8 billion
Age: 70
Source of Wealth: Leveraged buyouts
Answer: "If I were 25, in a stock with huge long-term potential, and if I were 75, in inflation-rate adjusted Treasury Bonds."

Alexander Rovt
Net Worth: $1.6 billion
Age: 56
Source of Wealth: Fertilizer
Answer: "Invest in real estate."

Phil Ruffin
Net Worth: $2.1 billion
Age: 73
Source of Wealth: Casinos, real estate
Answer: "Get into a high-limit poker game."

Tom Secunda
Net Worth: $1.3 billion
Age: 54
Source of Wealth: Bloomberg
Answer: "I'd buy more Bloomberg stock if I could."

Patrick Soon-Shiong
Net Worth: $5.8 billion
Age: 56
Source of Wealth: Pharmaceuticals
Answer: "Invest it in my scientific team."

Allen Stanford
Net Worth: $2.2 billion
Age: 58
Source of Wealth: Stanford Financial Group
Answer: "If that is your entire liquid asset, put it in a 12-month CD and wait to see how things play out in 2009 with a new administration."