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The first in-depth look at one of the world's richest-and mostsecretive-businessmen
Though his wealth is certainly no secret, the world's fourthrichest man remains an enigma. Paul Allen made his fortune as BillGates's partner in Microsoft, supplemented it with questionable,though often profitable, venture capital schemes, and has sinceinvested his wealth in a widely divergent list of interests. Heowns the NBA's Portland Trailblazers and the NFL's SeattleSeahawks. Among hundreds of smaller ventures, he is a primarystakeholder in the film production company DreamWorks SKG andformerly held a large piece of the widely despised Ticketmastermonopoly. Dubbed the "Accidental Zillionaire" by Wired magazine,Allen has often appeared to be a bumbler who succeeded primarilythrough luck and by coopting the visionary ideas of others. In TheAccidental Zillionaire, Laura Rich, one of the foremost chroniclersof the Internet economy, unravels the secret Paul Allen, his innermotivations, his vision, and his personality. She tells Allen'sstory from his days as a fledgling computer geek in suburbanWashington state, to his role in founding the world's largestsoftware company, to his battle with cancer, to his sycophanticflirtation with Hollywood and its brightest stars. Paul Allen is aman of various interests and passions, but few if any know himwell. The Accidental Zillionaire for the first time reveals theinner workings of a towering figure in the worlds of technology,business, sports, and entertainment.
Laura Rich (Los Angeles, CA) is a former writer forThe Industry Standard, Adweek, and InsideMedia. She currently covers the world of digital entertainmentfor Entertainment Weekly, Fortune, and TheHollywood Reporter. She penned The Standard's popular "RichList" report and has reported on Paul Allen for years.