The Millionaire Maker: How Serial Entrepreneur Helps Others Achieve Their Goals Andrew Masanto says that while many successful entrepreneurs become millionaires themselves, they often fail to provide similar outcomes for the employees that work for them
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Many successful entrepreneurs — especially those who come from nothing or have experienced hardships themselves — have a special place in their hearts for helping others. Spanx founder and owner Sara Blakely devotes much of her time to the Sara Blakely Foundation, an organization that helps women around the world through education and entrepreneurship. Peter Thiel's Thiel Fellowship grants $100,000 checks to young people looking to build innovative products and services, wooing them away from traditional university paths. Then there's the Bill and Melinda Gates' and Warren Buffett's Giving Pledge, which consists of wealthy members who pledge to donate at least half of their wealth to philanthropic causes.
Andrew Masanto, a serial entrepreneur, artist, former monk and Web3 visionary, is similarly a strong believer in giving back and spreading wealth and opportunity to those around him, with his own personal twist. While Masanto supports charitable causes, his main focus is ensuring that the hungry, driven and ambitious people around him achieve their lifes' biggest goals.
Masanto states that his greatest satisfaction in life has not been his own success, but rather seeing the people who stood by him also make it big. In a recent tweet, Masanto challenges other successful entrepreneurs who have focused primarily on enriching themselves instead of the hardworking teams around them. Masanto notes that while many successful entrepreneurs become millionaires themselves, they often fail to provide similar outcomes for the employees that work for them. He encourages others to examine the past results of those who have worked with entrepreneurs (which he says should exclude partners or investors), and assess whether the teams and early believers that supported those entrepreneurs also achieved success. He warns people assessing new working opportunities to focus not on the personal past results of the entrepreneur in question, but instead on how widely that success was shared.
Masanto's emphasis on helping others stems from a difficult past. As a child, he experienced extreme bullying and racism growing up in Australia. "I wish someone had given me direction and shown me kindness back then" he reminisces. After graduating from the University of Sydney with first class honors in two degrees - a Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Laws - Masanto postponed joining the workforce, opting to pursue training as a monk in Africa while carrying out humanitarian work. "I wanted to explore life outside of the system that I grew up in, so pulled a 180 and went to Africa to study under a Monk" he says. "Living amongst people experiencing destitute poverty in Africa was also a pivotal experience. It changed my perception of happiness and overall relationship with success. It showed me that while money is a basic key to happiness, but not the entire picture. Relationships, contribution and experience are equally key, especially once your basic needs are taken care of."
Now with two successful unicorn exits under his belt, Masanto states that his primary objective is to see those around him succeed. "I strive to be a key connector of influential people across many industries. I've noticed making the right connections for people can make a significant difference in a person's life or company's trajectory" Masanto states. "It's super rewarding for me to see my friends, colleagues and those who helped and believed in me achieve success and become healthier and happier. Winning in the game of business is fun, but only when others win too."
Interestingly, this seemingly altruistic behavior isn't completely without selfish gain or motives. Indeed, Masanto admits that seeing his colleagues succeed provides Masanto with a selfish satisfaction "Once I 'made it', I realized that money didn't fulfill me quite like I once thought it would. I found helping others define and achieve their dreams made me much happier and less empty."
Several of Masanto's ex-employees have been quoted as saying that their first million came directly from his initiatives and efforts. Masanto helped his brother, Christopher Masanto, and Christopher's friend, Damian Grabarczyk, launch PetLab Co., which quickly became the fastest growing pet company in the United States. This goodwill seemingly doesn't extend only to family - Andrew has an uncanny track record of helping many long-time friends launch businesses and achieve success. This includes Alex Page (CEO of Nillion), Jordan Fried (CEO of NFT.com and Founder of Buffered VPN) and Jake Udell (CEO of Metalink and Founder of Th3rd Brain). In a recent Tweet, Udell recognizes Masanto, stating "this man believed in my vision and I before anybody else did. He put together the original team and was super helpful in giving me the confidence to start the company in the first place. I love you brother!".
After his first big exit, Masanto quietly signed up to the music school, ICON Collective, to pursue a personal passion in music production. It's there that he met fellow student, Kyle Armour. Armour recalls, "I had no idea Andrew was this savant entrepreneur. He kept his successes private and he just seemed like any other music school student, just slightly older. I was staying in the dorms alongside him, completely unaware of his success stories." Armour continues, "After graduating he told me he had this opportunity for me to join a new crypto company he was starting, which at the time was still a relatively unknown industry. This turned out to be Hedera Hashgraph, which is now one of the top 30 cryptocurrency projects in the world. I made more money by being a part of that project than I ever thought would be possible for me."
Another friend, Alex Godwin, states, "I always bet on Andrew and never pass on the things that he sends. Whether that was Bitcoin in 2012 or Nillion today, he is a savant for finding exponential technologies and he is the single biggest factor in my success. When trying to do great things in the world, you want someone as smart and as loyal as Andrew who you can go to war with to bring these promising ideas to life."
Currently, Masanto is working on what he believes may be his greatest endeavor to date. He, along with PhD mathematician, Dr. Miguel de Vega, have started Nillion, an innovative, non-blockchain, approach to private decentralized and secure computation. Nillion has raised over $20m in venture funding and has assembled one of the most compelling teams in web3, including Conrad Whelan, the Founding Engineer of Uber as Chief Technology Officer, Slava Rubin, the Founder of Indiegogo as Chief Business Officer and Lindsay Cohen, the associate General Counsel of Coinbase as General Counsel. As part of this team, Masanto invited his long time friend, Andrew Yeoh, to be the Founding Chief Marketing Officer of Nillion. Yeoh publicly states on LinkedIn that "Andrew has made so many of my friends rich beyond measure. We've been friends for over a decade now and across his 5 companies he's turned 30+ people we know into millionaires many times over. In doing so, he's transformed the fabric of our network and literally altered the course of so many lives."
Andrew Masanto and the Nillion team
Masanto is also serving as co-founder for NFT.com with his long-time friends and Hedera Hashgraph alums Jordan Fried, Alec Otto and Kyle Armour, two of whom he met while attending music school. The NFT.com marketplace and community has since been featured in publications like Forbes, NFT Evening, CoinTelegraph, Decrypt, and more.
Beyond helping friends, Masanto has donated to several charities and supports causes. He also has a deep passion for art and created a not-for-profit community for artists and fans to collaborate and support each other, called ANONA. The founding document of the ANONA movement, called the "ANONA Manifesto", is based on a thesis Masanto wrote on the importance of collaboration in art during his time as a music student. True to his philosophy, Masanto brought in friends and colleagues, including Nathan Murphy (COO of ANONA) and Ariya Studios, who directed several ANONA videos. Murphy states "Andrew saw my potential and gave me the opportunity to run ANONA as COO, which then led to me earning a spot in his latest company, Nillion. Andrew has also been my mentor for several years and continues to guide me through the ups, downs and pitfalls of business and entrepreneurship."
In a world where success is often measured by personal wealth and achievements, Masanto stands out as an example of an entrepreneur who values the success of others. Interestingly, by investing in and supporting the dreams of those around him, Masanto has himself become a key connector of influential people across many industries. As he continues to work on his latest ventures, Masanto remains committed to his philosophy that "winning in the game of business is fun, but only when others win too."