So Bono Is Now Disgustingly Rich – Updated

UPDATE: See my added comments and information at the end of the article…

I guess I should say that he is now RIDICULOUSLY even more rich than he was before.

I’m having a hard time deciding whether I need to shit on him for it. I think I will!

Despite his endless work for the poor, which he deserves incredible credit for by the way…and I don’t give a rat’s ass if you hate U2’s music…you have to respect the man for what he’s done socially in the world.

If you don’t know the story of his latest investment, you must be living under a rock or something. You can read about it here if interested.

Basically he is now the $1.5 billion man.

So I could sit here and praise him for his incredible investment acumen. I could say ‘Good on ya mate!’.

Funny thing is this represents a lot of what I hate in the world right now. Unbridled greed. Who the hell needs that much money? And a better question is why you go after it?

Again, you can slam me all over hell’s half-acre. He does more good than most. Unless he’ll use a significant portion of that money to fund making the world better, is he any different then the other folks who make an insane amount of money?

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not asking him to give it all away. I’m asking why anyone could possibly want, let alone need,that much. I certainly can’t afford to invest in anything other than living, let alone Facebook. So to me this is just another in a long list of ‘how the rich keeping getting richer’ while the rest of us keep getting poorer.

I often wonder if he thinks about that. There are poor people everywhere, not just Africa. And I’m all for giving those people in Africa a chance at a better life. Just curious what our man Bono thinks about the fact that people in Ireland and everywhere else are sliding into poverty and hunger daily. How about not just changing the world for Africans? Wow, that sounds incredibly pissy and a little unfair. And it is.

He of the 1% just made a killing in the market. Great that he can do that. The reason I’m pissed is less that Bono made that killing along with a bunch of very rich folks and more that the disparity between said rich folk and us is now a gaping maw. Do the companies that he and all these other people own trickle down their fortunes? And I mean all the way down. Down to the janitor who cleans your toilet or the maid who cleans your house, or whoever! Do you just pay the going rate for help or do you pay more because you can afford it and it’s right to share the wealth. Do you tip insanely well for good service?

That complete and utter lack of sharing the good fortune is the problem. It is not Bono’s but I guarantee in some regard in the chain of his life, he does not consider those at the bottom who could use that hand. And if all the companies that paid millions and billions to their executives instead paid tens of thousands more to their work force, do you understand what would happen?

The economy would recover. The increases in tax revenue would pay down the debt. There would be more people with disposable income out there buying more goods. And the companies would continue to make money. Yes, prices would rise to some degree but if wages were keeping pace with inflation and more, the rest of us might be able to save. We might be able to invest a little. And the great circle of life would continue.

So maybe I don’t so much hate Bono as much I hate what his windfall represents. The evil that those who already have so much feel the need to have more without any ability for most of us to participate, even in a small way.

For all the good he does, this is not representative of that. And for me, it takes a little of the shine off his many accomplishments. At least today. The world is a fucked up place. We need to continue to fight for fairness. And it will be a fight. The protests we’ve seen overseas will come here. We’ve seen a bit of it with the Quebec student riots. Occupy needs to grow and become a definitive force instead of an idea. This will all come as the disparity grows. Desperation is the accelerant for change. And though we’ve been fed the distracted and lazy lifestyle that keeps us on our couches, the day hunger hits home is the day you wake up. We all need to wake up. Now.

Okay so there some articles appearing stating Bono did not make a billion on the IPO. That is because he is one of 7 partners in Elevation Partners and they only sold a portion of their shares. What the articles seem to ignore is the shares kept are still part of his net worth. Those remaining shares could be worth as much as $100 million to him if he sold today. If Facebook goes the route of Apple or Google, count on that billion from this alone to take him there. Don’t forget as well, his personal net worth before this was significant enough. My commentary stands, billionaire or not, today.

Here’s what I found. I dispute that because the shares were not sold, they aren’t part of his worth.

“Before yesterday’s IPO, there was much speculation that based on his involvement with the investment equity firm, Elevation Partners (Bono is a co-founder and managing director), that Bono would reap a windfall of $1.5 billion or so. He would like to set the record straight.

Yes, he made some money yesterday, could be as little as $4.4 million or as high as $10 million. Here’s why:

1. The $1.5 billion figure would have only been realized had Elevation sold all its shares after the IPO. They didn’t. They unloaded only 11.5% of what they owned, keeping the rest.

2. Bono is just one of seven managing partners at Elevation. Profits have to be divided seven ways.

Diving deeper, here’s what happened:

Elevation made it very clear that as part of the IPO they were going to sell 4.62 million of its 44.7 million shares. Those shares had been acquired at an average price of $4.69 per share, or $210 million.

At roughly $38 a share, the gross on the sale of those 4.62 million shares was $175,654,000. The net on that was $159,954,000.

After paying out money owed to their clients (Elevation invests money on behalf of other people, too), the company’s total profit on the day was more like $31 million.

Dividing things up based on the Elevation’s partner structure, Bono could have earned as little as $4.4 million (if things were divided equally seven ways) or as much as $10 million (if he has some kind of extra seniority).”

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