How Kevin O’Leary Achieved a Net Worth of $400 Million

People who spend a lot of time watching TV might be familiar with Kevin O’Leary. After all, he is best-known for being a businessman who has since become a TV personality, as shown by his roles on both the Canadian Dragon’s Den and its American counterpart Shark Tank. However, it is important to note that he has had some other roles as well, with an excellent example being his very short political career.

In short, O’Leary was one of the people who ran for the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada in 2017 following the eventual resignation of Stephen Harper because of his loss to Justin Trudeau in the 2015 Canadian federal election. Pure name recognition made O’Leary one of the front-runners, which resulted in some comparisons of him being a less regressive but more pro-business Canadian Trump. Something that was fueled by what one might call O’Leary’s bluntness, though some have suggested that O’Leary’s public image is cultivated whereas Trump’s public image is not. Whatever the case, O’Leary winded up withdrawing from the race, stating that while he could win, his lackluster reception in the province of Quebec in spite of the fact that he is a Quebecer meant that he couldn’t hope to beat Justin Trudeau in the next Canadian federal election.

Due to this, O’Leary remains a businessman turned TV personality for the time being. However, there are some small indications that his political ambitions might not have died down altogether, though time alone will tell whether he will eventually wind up as a businessman turned TV personality turned politician.

What Is Kevin O’Leary’s Current Net Worth?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, there is no exact figure for O’Leary’s current net worth. However, the latest estimate from Investopedia is that he has a net worth of more than $400 million when measured in USD. Still, considering that O’Leary has been involved in some rather sizable deals over the course of his career, it isn’t impossible for his current net worth to be a fair bit off from that figure.

How Did Kevin O’Leary Reach His Current Net Worth?

For those who are unfamiliar with his story, O’Leary is the son of a Lebanese-Canadian woman named Georgette née Bukalam, who was a small business owner who had a strong interest in investing in her personal time. This can be seen in how she would invest a full third of her paychecks into investing in a combination of interest-bearing bonds and dividend-paying stocks. On top of this, Georgette proved to be quite good at getting a good return on her investments, though O’Leary didn’t find out about this until after her dearth because she had kept her investment portfolio a secret. However, Georgette did pass on a fair amount of knowledge about investing to O’Leary, which presumably contributed to him developing an interest in the subject when he was still a university student. Meanwhile, O’Leary attributes his marketing skills to an internship at Nabisco, where he worked on its cat food brand at the time.

Eventually, O’Leary became involved in a number of companies before selling his stake. Of these, the best-known is Softkey, which would go on to become The Learning Company in 1995 when it bought out said business in exchange for $606 million before taking up its name. In time, The Learning Company was picked up by Mattel for $4.2 billion, which worked out very well for O’Leary but not so much for Mattel. In fact, there are those who consider the purchase to be one of the worst business acquisitions in history because it caused Mattel to suffer a $105 million loss when it had been expecting a sizable profit of $50 million, which wasn’t even considering the huge tumble in Mattel’s share price that had wiped out a significant chunk of its shareholders’ value. There were accusations of fraudulent accounting that forced Mattel to pay out a settlement, but O’Leary has always claimed that the failure was to be blamed on a clash of business cultures as well as the economic bust that was happening at the time.

Whatever the case, O’Leary’s business activities presumably explains a significant chunk of his net worth. Besides that, he has his books as well as more importantly, his career as a TV personality, which seems to be continuing strong in the present. So long as this remains true, it seems probable that his net worth will continue to increase as well.


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