Ashton Kutcher: From Boy-next-door To Boss-next-door
Have you ever wondered how celebrities make the most out of their earnings? Are their incomes solely dependent on their acting careers? Which companies do they put their investments in? Well, some celebrities have businesses for an extra source of income. For example, Ashton Kutcher is a celebrity that has a lot of things to put in his resume. Aside from being an actor, as most people have known him for, he is also a producer, businessman, and an investor. Kutcher is not just the pioneer of celebrity investors, but he has been really famous as the most active Silicon Valley investor.
Angel of the Business World
He first started as an angel investor, helping small-time businesses or new companies to start up. He eventually co-founded A-Grade Investments and Sound Ventures. Ashton Kutcher wasn’t always the heartthrob that he is, but hard work and a business mindset have always been imprinted in his genes.
He started from humble beginnings, his father working at a meat-packing plant while his mother worked as a teacher. Before landing a career in show business, he worked several odd jobs, like janitorial work, lawn mowing, and even dishwashing. At 13 years old, he even bought his own snowmobile worth $1400 using his savings. He worked after school and on weekends and saved every money he got from those jobs.
A Student in the Morning, Model by lunch, Businessman at night
Ashton was taking up a degree in biochemical engineering at the University of Iowa when he got offered a modeling job and served as the beginning of his acting career. While he was acting, his passion for business did not stop. Currently, Ashton has invested over $3 billion into startup companies and has been funding 177 rounds for several years. His main goal is to help and enable aspiring entrepreneurs in creating a brighter future for their businesses. Kutcher started angel investing because of the intent to provide solutions to people’s daily problems when it comes to starting companies.
Angel Soaring High
When he founded the production company, Katalyst, his career as an angel investor sky-rocketed, flooring its way to the top and connecting with important people in Silicon Valley. In 2009, Kutcher invested $1 million into Skype, just a few months before Microsoft bought it and increased its value.
But Ashton’s investing career didn’t stop there. He continued to learn more about it and asked for mentorship with a fellow angel investor Ron Conway, who is considered one of the godfathers of angel investing. His mentorship under Ron Conway helped him a lot with strategies and worked him through the whole process.
A for Ashton, A+ for A-Grade
In just six years, Ashton Kutcher turned a $30 million investment into $200 million with the help of other investors and tech executives backing their start-up companies. Ashton and the other investors really made a wise choice funding A Grade since a lot of the companies it has invested in have been really successful and became huge companies today.
In 2015, Kutcher co-founded venture fund Sound Ventures using $100 million from Liberty Media. Making investments using other companies’ money helps Ashton and his partners widen the scope of their reserves and invest in bigger companies.
3 Rules from your Hunky Master Investor
Sound Ventures was handling over $100 million worth of investments by 2017 and was making more than 50 investments and six rounds of financing by 2018. Companies included are Neighborly and OpenGov. Also, in 2018, Kutcher and Shark Tank judge Lori Greiner invested $200,000 in Beebo for 15% each. They both used their expertise and assets to gain consumers for Beebo, a company selling shoulder strap that holds baby bottles for convenient bottle feeding.
Being considered as one of the top celebrity investors of his time, Ashton has three rules in investing. One, the investors must know and understand their product and the industry they are in. Two, you must always have the guts to conquer and look past failures. In the business world, you are not always going to be on top, there are a lot of obstacles in your path and you must have the courage to get through them to be able to achieve greatness in what you do. Lastly, you must get along well with your business partners.
Ashton has been in the business industry for several years, and his most important advice for the investors is that, invest in things that have your best interests and learn about the things you don’t know about. If Ashton Kutcher will be your financial advisor, rest assured that your finances will be handled pretty well.