Like the best people, the mega-rich aren’t immune to making epic mistakes. Even the shrewdest, most successful billionaires like Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk have committed monumental blunders that have cost them dear. We take a look at 2 of the most expensive billionaire bungles of all time.
JK Rowling’s regrettable purchase
A couple of years back, the Harry Potter writer snapped up her very own yacht, paying around $27 million for the privilege.
Rowling had fallen in love with the classically-styled schooner after chartering it on vacation. Bolstering its allure, the elegant five-cabin boat once belonged to actor Johnny Depp, who named the vessel after the Greek sea goddess Amphitrite.
Rowling clearly had a radical change of heart since, only eight months after she bought it, the yacht was up for sale in the vastly reduced cost of $19.2 million, $7.8 million less than she paid.
Jeff Bezos’ phone fiasco
The richest person on the planet, Jeff Bezos is sitting on a $130.8 billion fortune, and few can dispute that the Amazon boss has the Midas touch. Yet Bezos has made some terrible company mistakes in his time.
Top of the list is the unlucky Fire Phone. With the idea to compete with Apple and Samsung, Amazon launched the device in 2014 to much hype. Still, the phone’s excessive price tag, awkward operating system and restricted ecosystem spelt its own downfall.
The phone failed to market, even if it was reduced in cost from several hundred dollars to just 99cents. Amazon quietly discontinued the device the next year and had to write off $170 million in the process.