Richard Branson was 15 when he dropped out of school to run a magazine.
On a recent episode of the “Armchair Expert” podcast hosted by Dax Shepard and Monica Padman, the Virgin Group founder said the billionaire made the decision for a simple reason: He knew he could make money at it.
By cold-calling companies and asking them to take out advertisements against their competitors, Branson raised $3,000 to $4,000 for his Student Magazine, he said. The headmaster at Branson’s school was taken aback by his persuasiveness and offered a prediction and a warning.
″[I knew] I could pay for the printing of the paper and manufacturing, and so I quit school … with the headmaster saying, ‘You’re either going to prison or you’re going to become a millionaire,’” Branson, 72, said on the podcast.
Branson hasn’t spent any time behind bars, but he has an estimated net worth of $3.5 billion, as of Thursday morning. His entrepreneurial empire has expanded past his teenage magazine to include airlines, casinos, hotels, and more.