Of all the players set to make substantial windfalls when Facebook goes public, rock star Bono is perhaps the most intriguing.
The 52-year-old frontman for U2 is the co-founder of Elevation Partners LP, a private equity firm that between 2009 and 2010 invested some $270 million in the social network for a 1.5 percent stake. At the time of that financial commitment, Facebook was valued at $16 billion. This week's IPO valuation has recently been increased to $104 billion.
Add it all up, and Bono and his partners stand to potentially score more than $1.5 billion. While no one is sure exactly what the singer's personal payout might be, some are saying it will easily push his overall wealth into billionaire territory, making him the richest rock star in the world.
Not bad for someone who as recently as last year was called "the worst investor in America."
OK, so a rich rock star is about to get even richer. Does this matter? Well yes, when you consider the humanitarian causes and charities that he's passionate about. While Bono has never been very public about his financial donations to such endeavors, the time and effort he's put into making a difference is unprecedented in the music world. In April 2011, the National Journal named him "the most politically effective celebrity of all time."
“He calls on everyone to be their best,” actor George Clooney told the New York Times. “If you fall short, you feel embarrassed. That’s the unique thing. And we all want to be that person.”
So Friday — when everyone from Mark Zuckerberg to Sean Parker hits billionaire status — know that there's at least one person on that list with a successful track record of giving back. And he's about to become even more powerful.
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