How Kylie Jenner got rich with Mak and G
This episode, Mak and G look at the unique way Kylie Jenner became a billionaire, how she leveraged her fame to make money, and what we can learn from her story.
Kylie Jenner is the youngest self-made billionaire in the world, but how did she make all this money while still in her early 20s?
In this podcast episode, Mak and G look at the way Kylie made her wealth, what she spends it on, and what we can learn from her story…
“There are almost 3000 billionaires in the world today.” – Mak
00:23 – How many billionaires are in the world and how they made their money.
01:52 – The top 100 billionaires in the world.
02:18 – Is Kylie Jenner really the youngest self-made billionaire in the world.
04:37 – How Kylie Jenner made her money.
05:36 – What extreme fame leverage means.
06:26 – The company that made Kylie Jenner rich.
07:16 – The issues with being famous.
08:20 – The philanthropy work Kylie Jenner does.
09:05 – The crazy things Kylie Jenner spends her money on.
10:15 – The smart investments Kylie Jenner has made.
13:00 – How Kylie Jenner’s story is different from other billionaires.
GRANT: Hey Mak, it sure has been great learning about these crazy successful BILLIONAIRES.
MAK: Same for me G! They’ve all been so different! Bill Gates, Oprah, Jeff Bezos…totally different stories
GRANT: And they all got super rich in different ways. Bill did it with software. Oprah is all entertainment. And Jeff did it by putting shopping online.
MAK: Yup. The craziest thing is there are almost three THOUSAND billionaires in the world today.
GRANT: That’s a lotta people with a lotta money.
MAK: Too true. No way we could learn about all of them. And I guess not all of them have stories as interesting as Bill, Oprah and Jeff!
GRANT: No. There’s a lot of mystery businessmen and women in there that nobody really knows about.
MAK: Hey Grant, I bet it gets really competitive sometimes, like “how many billions can I make this year”!!
GRANT: Yeah, kinda like a crazy wealthy version of “Keeping Up With The Joneses”.
MAK: Keeping up with the…what now? Joneses? You mean us?
GRANT: Right, because our name is Jones. But, “Keeping Up With The Joneses” just means you’re getting competitive with your neighbors. If you get a new car, they want one!
MAK: Gotcha! Yeah I can see how the billionaires’ club could get like that. Especially because there’s this list that comes out every year of the Top 100 Billionaires in the world.
GRANT: Right, I heard about that too. It’s in this magazine called “Forbes” which dad’s always reading.
MAK: Exactly. It’s all about money and finance. And you know what, it makes me think of something I read about online.
GRANT: What’s that Mak?
MAK: Well, you said keeping up with the Joneses right? That made me think of that TV show, “Keeping Up With the Kardashians”.
GRANT: Okaaay…not one of my favorites, I gotta say…waaaay too much vocal fryyyyy
MAK: Totalllyyyyy. But it doesn’t matter. One of the stars of that show, Kylie Jenner, was named the youngest self-made billionaire in the world with a net worth of just over $1 billion in 2019.
GRANT: Kylie Jenner? Seriously? I remember her saying “IS THAT A CHICKEN”? Do you remember that? Absolutely hilarious. That’s when her mom bought her a miniature pig for a pet!
MAK: I do remember. That was HILARIOUS). To this day, I’m not sure if she was serious or not.
GRANT: Anyway, that’s so crazy. SHE’S a self-made billionaire? And she’s the youngest? How old is she?
MAK: She’s only 23 years old!
GRANT: So that means she was born in…1997! I wonder when the first self-made billionaire born this millennium will happen.
MAK: Good question. My guess is, not too much longer. But back to Kylie. Because guess what bro, there’s a twist…
GRANT: Don’t tell me. She’s not actually a billionaire?
MAK: Nailed it bro! Or at least, it’s up for debate. That’s probably a better way to put it.
GRANT: How come? It has to be pretty clear that you’re either one or you’re not.
MAK: That’s what you’d think. But “no”. Not long after Forbes named her the youngest self-made billionaire, they thought she made up some of her income and was really only worth $700 million!
GRANT: Ha! ONLY $700 million. I’d take that…
MAK: ME TOO!! But, she fought back and said Forbes’ comments were “inaccurate and unproven”. So who knows? Either way, she’s still CRAZY successful for a 23-year-old!
GRANT: You got that right. How did she make her money anyway?
MAK: Well her family story is kind of unique as a lot of people know.
GRANT: Wasn’t it the TV show that made her famous?
MAK: It is. BUT it didn’t make her close to being a billionaire otherwise her entire family would be billionaires too!
GRANT: Good point. So how DID she do it?
MAK: Kylie took a look at what she had going for her and how she could use it. She figured she could easily market a product because of her fame. If she said something was good, lots of people would buy it.
GRANT: Yeah…not a bad place to start if you’re trying to launch a business.
MAK: Agree. You could say it’s an unfair advantage. But Kylie still wanted to make something out of it. She could have just carried on “being famous” and still been pretty wealthy.
GRANT: Sounds like that’s one of her BILLIONAIRE LIFE SKILLS to me. Same as we talked about with Jeff Bezos right? She saw an opportunity to use something she had in her favor.
MAK: That’s smart. Do you know Forbes even called it “Extreme Fame Leverage”.
GRANT: Leverage? What does that mean?
MAK: It just means she made the absolute most out of what she had…
GRANT: Got it. Leverage. Good word. Together, we could use our Extreme Twin Leverage to get more allowance out of dad.
MAK: Yes we do G!
GRANT: Let’s do it, I’m calling that move the Twin Pincer.
MAK: I like it, “pincer” like crab claws. He’ll be helpless and he’ll have to say yes. Besides, who’s gonna take out the trash, and do all the stuff we do around here anyway.
MAK: Hold that thought bro, let’s get back to Kylie. So, she started a make-up and cosmetics company called “Kylie Cosmetics”.
GRANT: Wow. How much make-up would you have to sell to make $700 million??
MAK: Right? A LOT. But I guess that shows, even though she started pretty wealthy, she still had to make a good quality product that people actually wanted to buy.
GRANT: And, she’s only 23. There aren’t as many women billionaires. So even if she’s only “ALMOST” a billionaire, she’s achieved a lot and is a role model to a lot of people.
MAK: You said it G. After all, she has almost 200 MILLION followers on Instagram, which is in the top five most followed accounts IN…. THE…. WORLD!
GRANT: Incredible. So a lot of people are interested in her and must look up to her as well as admire her.
MAK: Definitely. But being famous isn’t all good. Kylie has said she thinks she wasn’t meant to be famous and that having people follow everything you do can be tough.
GRANT: I could see that. I wouldn’t like people knowing EVER…Y…THING about me.
MAK: Me neither. Kylie said she has had a hard time with confidence and anxiety because of her fame. It’s not all about the fancy cars and mansions like we may think!
GRANT: Good point!
MAK: But through all of that she’s had some big success.
GRANT: Yeah, what happened with her business after she set it up?
MAK: CODY bought more than half of Kylie Cosmetics. They’re one of the biggest cosmetics companies in the world and worth well over $2billion. So she must be doing something right!
GRANT: Talk about doing something right, does she do a lot of philanthropy? Is she as generous as the other billionaires we’ve learned about?
MAK: She is. She auctioned her clothes on eBay to raise money for a children’s hospital in LA. She’s also donated money by doing cool events like yard sales, bowling and kickball games.
GRANT: Sounds like she has some fun way to raise money! She should do a celebrity dodgeball tournament between Dwayne Johnson and Kim Kardashian. I’d like to see Kim get hit by the ROCK. Wouldn’t that be cool?
MAK: I’d pay to see that. That is cool. She’s been involved in raising millions of dollars with her family too.
GRANT: Giving back is needed. I guess she also bought some pretty sweet stuff with all that moolah too, right?
MAK: Well..you could say that. She goes pretty crazy with it sometimes.
GRANT: Right, I heard she has a LOT of cars, including a Ferrari her boyfriend gave her worth over $1 million! And that for some reason she likes all her cars to be orange. ORANGE!!
MAK: I saw that too, an orange car sounds weird but if you look at the photos they’re actually pretty sweet.
GRANT: Really? Hey, if someone gave me a Ferrari, I wouldn’t care about the color!
MAK: I wouldn’t either! Here’s one for you. Did you know she spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on her daughter’s birthday party – and she was only one! She won’t even remember it!
GRANT: I did hear that – didn’t she even get a live performance of that Baby Shark song? Baby shark doo doo doo…
MAK: STOP! That song is a total earworm. Totally worms its way into your mind through your ears.
GRANT: Ok you’re right. It IS pretty annoying. But you know it just became the most viewed video EVER on YouTube? Over 7 BILLION views.
MAK: UnbelIEVable…doo doo doo doo doo doo doo.
GRANT: Nice one sis.
MAK: Thanks. Anyway Kylie does also make some smart investments too, especially in property. She’s spent something like $40 million on houses over the past few years.
GRANT: Do you remember the TV show where she bought her first home? And her sisters were telling her about all her new responsibilities as a homeowner?
MAK: Yeah, that was so funny. She told them she had no idea how to do laundry, and they told her she needed rattlesnake fencing to protect her dogs!!
GRANT: I guess that’s California livin’ for ya. I mean, we have some rattlesnakes in Indy, but they’re pretty rare.
MAK: Thank goodness! I hate snakes like Indiana Jones. Maybe we’re related-Indiana-Jones. Well, I guess that’s about it for the Kylie story hey? She’s a character that’s for sure!
GRANT: Agree. Hey where’s dad? I just realized we know more about Kylie Jenner than he does.
MAK: Well that’s stating the obvious G….
GRANT: Maybe it’s time to try our “Extreme Twin Leverage” plan?
MAK: Great idea!
DAD: Gimme a C! Gimme an O! Gimme an L! Gimme a T! Gimme an S! What’s its spell?
GRANT: Yeah, go Colts! We love the Colts.
MAK: But dad…WHAT are you doing with those pom-poms!
GRANT: I’m just glad he’s still wearing jeans.
DAD: Oh I was just practicing, getting into character. I thought maybe Money with Mak & G needed a cheerleader squad since you guys do SUCH an awesome job!
MAK: You’re right about that actually, we’ve just done the whole Kylie Jenner story without you.
DAD: Way to go!
GRANT: Right, but instead of a cheerleader squad we have another idea…ready Mak?
MAK/GRANT: DAAAAD, can we have a raise in our allowance?
MAK: Huh, what? I guess the Twin Pincer movement wasn’t that powerful after all.
GRANT: I think I need to do some more research on leverage. I’m out of ideas. Your turn sis!
MAK: I’ll have to think about it too. So maybe next time.
Ben’s 2 Cents
Ok – so Kylie Jenner’s story is a little different than the other billionaires we’ve talked about this season.
She was already famous, and already wealthy. She also came from a very well-known family, for a lot of reasons.
But whatever you think of how Kylie Jenner made her money, her story is still pretty incredible. She used her fame not just to STAY FAMOUS, but to build something for herself using it. And, it turned out to be super successful. A lot of famous people start their own businesses doing something other than what they’re famous for. Many of them aren’t successful and don’t make hundreds of millions of dollars.
The celebrity phenomenon is still a very “new thing”, we don’t really know its full potential. Most famous people that we think of as “super rich” actually don’t get anywhere near the kind of wealth that the most successful self-made business owners get. Remember Jeff Bezos? He is worth $175 billion. Nobody got THAT rich just by being famous. At least not yet!
So Kylie’s story – whether she officially “made it” into the billionaire’s club or not – shows what a high bar billionaire status actually is. And that no matter how famous you are, you still have to make something that people really want and are prepared to pay for if you want to make money in business.
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