Last Updated on November 14, 2023 by Ben
An estimated $21 billion was in Paul Allen’s bank account when he passed away in 2018 as an American businessman, investor, and philanthropist.
He and Bill Gates co-founded Microsoft and are recognized for having significantly revolutionized the personal computer sector. In addition to his economic savvy, Allen donated more than two billion dollars to charity and non-profit organizations.
His legacy lives on through the investment company he founded, Vulcan Capital, which invests in cutting-edge energy technology, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and other fields.
What was Paul Allen’s net worth?
At the time of his passing in October 2018, Paul Allen was a well-known American businessman, investor, musician, sports team owner, and philanthropist with an estimated net worth of $20 billion. He and his childhood friend Bill Gates co-founded Microsoft, where he made most of his wealth, and Paul had 25% of Microsoft’s equity at the company’s 1986 IPO.
By 2000, his holding had gradually decreased to less than 5%, and the corporation no longer disclosed his ownership. Paul’s money was primarily invested in the real estate, private equity, and energy sectors at the time of his passing.
He held over a million square feet of retail, office, and industrial space in California, New York, Washington, and Oregon. He invested early through Vulcan Capital in Ticketmaster, Uber, DreamWorks, and Plains All American. Sadly, Paul also dropped $8 billion when he tried to increase broadband hastily.
Kenneth and Edna Allen welcomed Paul Gardner Allen into the world on January 21, 1953, in Seattle, Washington. He quickly became friends with Bill Gates at Lakeside School, the only high school they both attended. They both had a passion for computers, and they utilized the time provided to them over three weeks by hacking and programming the school’s mainframe system.
To gain access to computer laboratories as an administrator, Allen later developed a lie that he was a UW graduate student. He was expelled from the lab due to his efforts, yet he still received a flawless 1600 on the SAT.
After enrolling at Washington State University and joining the fraternity Phi Kappa Theta, he left after two years to work as a programmer for Honeywell close to Harvard, where Bill Gates was attending. Ultimately, Allen persuaded Gates to join him in establishing Microsoft, the software company that would later transform the personal computer market.
In 1975, Allen and Gates opened a business in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Their big break occurred when they encountered a Popular Electronics Magazine story about the Altair 8800. The computer was perfect for home computing because it was portable and affordable. The two men approached the Altair 8800’s maker and offered to create a programming language.
The creation of that language, known as BASIC, made them aware of the potential benefits of developing a programming language. Oh, and they created it for a computer they had never seen before, let alone owned. Amazingly, it was successful, and their language was effective.
Allen and Gates trademarked Microsoft on November 26, 1976. The business went public on March 13, 1986. Allen’s 25% ownership was worth $195 million after the opening day of trading. At 33 years old, he was.
As you know, Microsoft made its founders extremely wealthy over the following few decades, making it one of the most valuable firms in the world. Paul departed Microsoft in the middle of the 1980s due to a management disagreement with Bill Gates, but he continued to serve on the organization’s board of directors until 2000.
Allen used his Microsoft shares to fund Vulcan Capital, the private venture company he and his sister Jody Allen established in 1986. Both the Maaco and Meineke auto maintenance brands are currently owned by Vulcan. It was a founding investor in the movie company Dreamworks SKG and has developed over 7 million square feet of real estate.
Allen founded Vulcan Aerospace, which provided funding for the SpaceShipOne project and was awarded the $10 million Ansari X Prize in 2004. Richard Branson purchased the technology underlying SpaceShipOne from Allen.
(Which later became SpaceShipTwo.) Allen’s Vulcan Aerospace was constructing the largest airplane in the world at the time of his passing, and he intended to utilize this aircraft as a launch pad for orbital rockets.
Sports Team Ownership
The Portland Trail Blazers, Seattle Sounders FC, and Seattle Seahawks were three of Allen’s professional sports franchises. When former owner and real estate developer Ken Behring threatened to relocate the Seahawks to Southern California, he bought the team in 1997 for $194 million.
When Allen owned the Seahawks, he built a new stadium, hired Pete Carroll, a former USC coach, won a Super Bowl, and generally tried to appease a group of supporters regarded as among the NFL’s most fervent home crowds. He was successful there.
Paul Allen gathered an enormously spectacular and priceless personal art collection throughout his lifetime. Jasper Johns’ “Small False Start” (1960) and Paul Cezanne’s “La Montagne Sainte-Victoire” (1888-1890), as well as works by Sandro Botticelli, Jan Brughel, Edgar Degas, Claude Monet, Renoir, Georgia O’Keeffe, Mark Rothko, Paul Gaugin, Gustav Klimt, Canaletto, and others, are among the most famous pieces in his collection.
It was revealed in August 2022 that 150 of Allen’s works would be put up for sale by Christie’s because of the estate’s generosity. When the sale was first announced, it was anticipated that the 150 pieces would sell for more than $1 billion. Every penny will be donated to a good cause.
Health and Death
In 1982, Allen received a Stage 1-A Hodgkin lymphoma diagnosis even though radiation therapy over several months successfully treated his cancer. Allen had a non-Hodgkin lymphoma diagnosis in 2009, and the cancer was successfully treated until it came back in 2018, which led to his death on October 15 of septic shock. At 65 years old, he was.
Allen was heavily interested in charity and donated more than $2 billion to organizations supporting health and human services and advancing science and technology.
The debut blues-rock album Everywhere At Once by Allen and The Underthinkers was published in 2013. With friends like Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders and Joe Walsh of the Eagles, Allen plays some wicked electric guitar.
Their assets of Allen are held under a living trust that he created in 1993. His sister Jody Allen and her children are his beneficiaries because he never married or had any children. Due to the rarity and high value of Allen’s real estate assets, Jody and her children will likely keep them. For instance, Jody serves as chairman of the Paul G. Allen Trust, which owns the Seattle Seahawks and has no intention of selling the team.
Allen left a sizable real estate holding in his wake. Allen had a residence for every mood, from a Manhattan penthouse to a 4,000-acre getaway in Idaho to a mega-yacht.
In 2000, Allen bought the historic Georgia O’Keefe estate in Santa Fe, New Mexico, called Sol y Sombra. Three miles outside of Santa Fe is where the 20-acre property is situated. The property included a 9,685 square foot, five-bedroom main house built in the 1930s, a 5,000 square foot lodge, a guest house, and a carriage house when Allen bought it. When Allen bought it, it had a $12.2 million price tag on the MLS.
Utah: In 2013, Allen purchased the 2,066-acre Trees Ranch in southern Utah. Public lands encircle The Trees Ranch on three sides, and the Canaan Mountain Wilderness and the Bureau of Land Management are to the south, while Zion National Park is to the north and east. A little less than the ranch’s $25 million asking price was paid by Allen.
Atherton: In 2013, Allen and his sister bought a home in Silicon Valley there. On a 1.97-acre property, they spent $27 million for a 22,005 square foot, six-bedroom, six-bathroom home. The property includes a spa, a home theater, seven fireplaces, a five-car garage, a guesthouse with two bedrooms, a pool, and a residence for the caretaker.
NYC: Paul Allen spent $25 million in 2011 to purchase the penthouse at 4 East 66th Street, a 1920 limestone structure on Fifth Avenue and 66th Street. He already owned a whole-floor apartment on the 11th level, which he had paid $13.5 million for in 1996. Paul Allen’s estate sold the two properties for $101 million in July 2022.
Idaho: Paul Allen purchased two properties in 1993 close to the hamlet of Tetonia, 40 miles from Jackson, Wyoming, on the Wyoming side of the Tetons. One of the properties was a 2,400-acre plot of land near Grand Teton National Park’s border and the Targhee National Forest, and Allen invested $7.25 million in the building. After almost 15 years, Allen spent $3 million to purchase a 1,200-acre estate. The Teton Ridge Ranch, a 10,000-square-foot lodge made of pine, was part of the property. The Teton Ridge Ranch, whose accommodations cost $690 per night, was regarded as one of the top luxury resorts in the world when it closed in 2007.
Hawaii: For $11 million, Paul Allen purchased a 10.3-acre estate at Kailua Bay on the Big Island of Hawaii in 1997. The Four Seasons Hualalai Resort is close to the property. A concert pool, a garage, and three additional structures, including a 9,080 square foot home with five bedrooms and five bathrooms and a 2.968 square foot home with six bedrooms and five baths, were all added in 2011. There is also a little harbor on the property.
South of France: In the 1990s, Allen bought an 18-bedroom estate in Cap Ferrat, in the south of France. During the 1996 Cannes Film Festival, Allen hosted a pirate-themed party at the Villa Maryland house.
Washington: Allen paid $9 million in 1996 to acquire the 387-acre Sperry Peninsula on Lopez Island. Since 1945, it has been the location of a camp for kids. In addition to his 13,000 square foot, five-bedroom home, Allen also constructed a 5,400 square foot, nine-bedroom bunkhouse, a 3,150 square foot beach house, a second, 2,160 square foot home with two bedrooms, a two-bedroom, 1,24 square foot caretaker’s cottage, and a swimming pool.
On Mercer Island, the affluent Seattle neighborhood by the shores of Lake Washington, Allen owned eight homes spread across 10.8 acres of land on thirteen lots. Only one bridge connects Mercer Island’s 24,000 population to the mainland.
Pros and Cons Of Paul Allen’s Net Worth
- Paul Allen was one of the wealthiest people in America at the time of his passing, with a net worth of $20 billion;
- He co-founded Microsoft, one of the most successful tech companies in history, earning him a sizable share of the company’s wealth and profits;
- And he made wise investments in the real estate and energy sectors, which allowed him to compound his wealth and increase his portfolio.
- His share in Microsoft finally fell below 5%, meaning the business no longer had to disclose its interests.
- Despite his remarkable success as an investor and entrepreneur, Allen lost $8 billion on investments tied to an early attempt at spreading broadband.
Final Thought – Paul Allen Net Worth
Paul Allen’s passion and business zeal are evident in his wealth. He rose to the position of one of the wealthiest persons in America thanks to his unwavering work ethic, wise investments, and creative ideas. Generations of investors and entrepreneurs who want to succeed wildly will be motivated by his legacy.