A Graffiti Artist That Made $200 Million Overnight

Samuel Reason | July 30th, 2019

Most entrepreneurs and businessmen that become millionaires achieve it by grinding endlessly with long hours, they hustle and work hard. Others just get a bit lucky. One graffiti artist by the name of David Choe knows this lucky feeling all too well.


As recently featured on CNBC’s The Filthy Rich Guide, during the early 2000s, Sean Parker, the founder of Napster saw Choe’s work and thought it was amazing. So when Sean Parker ended up as the president of a small start-up called Facebook in 2005, he decided to hire Choe to fill up their original Silicon Valley headquarters with some cool murals.

Even though Choe was not a fan of social media such as MySpace and thought Facebook was a completely ridiculous idea, his prices for his art had been rising and rising at the time. Which led to him telling Parker he would be fine to paint their whole building, but it would cost them $60,000.

Parker offered Choe the choice between cash or company stock. The company did not even have the cash, but Parker wanted the murals in their offices. He heavily advised Choe to take the stock. Even to this day Choe is not sure why he choose the stock option, he did not believe in Facebook’s idea at all and there was no guarantee of any profit. The business could flounder and his shares of the company would end up being completely worthless.

Of course, we all know how it turns out when Facebook eventually went public in 2012 the share prices started at $38. This meant that his stock options were worth over $200 million almost immediately, making him a multimillionaire overnight. Not to mention that today the stock options are more than $170 per share!

It goes to show that sometimes as a budding entrepreneur or even a well-known artist, you just have to roll the dice and take a risk – as you never know it may work out for your benefit in the long run!

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