Self-Made Billionaires Who Were Once Poor

 Although the rich do get richer, these rags-to-riches stories remind us that through determination, grit, and a bit of luck anyone can overcome their circumstances and achieve extraordinary success.

 Sergey Brin

Google Inc. Co-founder Sergey Mikhaylovich Brin immigrated to the United States in 1979 at age six. Brin's family sought to escape Jewish persecution from a poverty-stricken, oppressive U.S.S.R.
Sergey's father, Michael, pushed the move.

 He attended a mathematics conference in Warsaw in 1977. There, Michael said he was able to "mingle freely with colleagues from the United States, France, England, and Germany and discovered that his intellectual brethren in the West were not 'monsters,'" according to 2007 interview with Moment Magazine.
Once in the U.S., Sergey earned a mathematics and computer science degree from the University of Maryland at College Park. Then he attended Stanford University for a doctorate in computer science. There he met Google co-founder Larry Page. In 1998, the young entrepreneurs operated Google from their dorm rooms. Brin's was the information hub, and Page's the business center. The two shelled out $15,000 on a terabyte of memory space to operate the then-small search engine. Comparatively, Google now stores several thousand terabytes of data.
An initial public offering (IPO) followed six years later on Aug. 19, 2004. Its success made Brin and Page billionaires. Today, Sergey Brin's estimated is worth billions of dollars.

John Paul DeJoria

  Before the age of 10, DeJoria, a first generation American, sold Christmas cards and newspapers to help support his family. He was eventually sent to live in a foster home and even spent some time in a gang before joining the military.
With a $700 dollar loan, DeJoria created John Paul Mitchell Systems and sold the shampoo door-to-door while living in his car. He later started Patron Tequila, and now invests in other industries

 Do Won Chang

Forever 21 founder Do Won Chang worked as a janitor, gas attendant and in a coffee shop when he first moved to America. He started Forever 21 with his wiffe in 1984. The line now has 480 stores that rake in about $3 billion in sale yearly.

Ralph Lauren

Lauren graduated high school in the Bronx, N.Y., but later dropped out of college to join the Army. It was while working as a clerk at Brooks Brothers that Lauren questioned whether men were ready for wider and brighter designs in ties. The year he decided to make his dream a reality, 1967, Lauren sold $500,000 worth of ties. He started Polo the next year.
John Woo

The famous Chinese director who has given the world the epic blockbusters Face/Off and Mission: Impossible II had to deal with life’s rough side from a very young age. Poverty and lack of food on many occasions was standard for Woo’s family since his father had tuberculosis and could not work and provide for his family. Additionally, when the Woo was only seven he became homeless after the family home was burned to the ground in a fire.
For the next two years the family would wander from shelter to shelter until they managed to get a new place to live a normal life again.

If you are reading this, life is better for you than it was for all these men.


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