The crazy woodpecker, the juice extractor and the millionaire maker
IN Finweek’s Win The Most Expensive Business Book in the World! Competition where we asked for ideas to make a million, we failed to mention in which currency. Many entrants, like james@e-glue, crossed Beit Bridge. However, I don’t think the author of US$995 self-help manual The Millionaire Maker, Matthias Schmelz, would approve of your scheme. He has a chapter called How to Make Money Without Investing One Cent! and at the time of writing you still had to put something down for Z$1m.
Sibusiso Mazibuko, I direct you to the same chapter. Your idea of trading equity CFDs sounds like a winner, but before I can take you up, I first have to sell the Namibian hardwood I bought on consignment after reading that “a tree will continue to grow regardless of economic downturns or business cycles, hence continuously producing added value” in the The Millionaire Maker chapters on investing in timber.
Among many would-be writers was Walter Scharf. He’s going to write The Billionaire Maker and sell it at half the price. It’s so simple it may just work, but you’ll have to share the spoils with another entrant, Jean-Luc Germiquet. (Walter, call me when you list your timber mill on AltX as you propose. Mr Schmelz says it’s “ always better to buy shares before the IPO”.) Ricky_Padayachee’s idea is short and sweet: Marry a millionaire. I’m afraid this idea is contrary to one of Mr Schmelz’s central commandments: Become your Own Boss.
Many put property high on the list of money-makers, but one developer, Julian Wesson, now sees easy money importing, for example, toy helicopters from China. Others believe saving is the path to riches. Marcel van Heerden is convinced that if you live like a monk you’ll be a millionaire much quicker than you think while Marié Blanche Ting learned to live below her means from her millionaire grandmother.
Pule Mohapi says the taxi industry, tax free as it is, is the place to put your money. Transport is also important to Mr Schmeltz: “Stuck in traffic? Great!” he says and “a chauffer can be your best investment” because working while commuting can save you 15 days a year. However, I don’t know how to square that with page 209 where under The Three Keys to Losing Weight you find this sentence: “The best investment I made in the year 2002 was a juice extractor.” There goes your idea for a once-a-day chewable pill to make a million and end global starvation, Johann Roux.
A few entrants refused to share their ideas, thinking that I’d steal them for myself. Me? Never! That said I wish I’d the benefit of Chris Siebrits’s suggestion – instead of emailing me, entry for the competition should’ve been via premium rated SMS. Also, MarkH, you don’t mind if I run with your idea of selling lingerie to plus-size women and koeksisters over the Internet? I’ve some thoughts of my own on the subject.
For thinking outside the box, Nomfundo Vilakazi and Dirk van Heerden deserve special mention: Vilakazi takes inspiration from the Karate Kid film to “be one with the million” and turn a Beetle into an Aston Martin, while Van Heerden came up with the idea of selling second-hand Vespas to metrosexuals after pondering the reasons for Patricia Lewis’s singing success.
To those who said they only wanted the Mont Blanc highlighter, I’m afraid the winner takes it all. I wouldn’t want you to miss out on the story on page 67 about the crazy woodpecker, which “would die sexually frustrated, lonely and exhausted”. If you don’t take the advice in The Millionaire Maker, that’s the fate that awaits you, says Mr Schmelz.
*The competition ends 23 March.