A lottery winner who bagged an $85 million jackpot claims that he used the experiences of others to not only keep himself on the right path with his winnings, but turn himself into a billionaire in the process.
Brad Duke scooped a prize of $85 million - £67 million to the Brits – but by 2016 he’d turned that fortune into $1 billion – around £793 million – through a series of shrewd investments and not making large and lavish purchases.
Duke scooped the prize back in 2005, winning the Idaho Powerball lottery, but not letting it go straight to his head.
Instead of purchasing a Ferrari and a 10-bedroom mansion, he put the money that he’d won to work, putting $45 million into low-risk investment ventures, $35 million into high-risk assets, and creating a $1.3 million Duke Family Foundation, a charity that helps non-profit organisations.
In 2007, he told CNN what he was planning to do, adding: "If you accept that cheque, you accept an amazing responsibility to yourself and whomever you decide to include in it.
"I was quiet about winning for a month before I decided to come out.
"During that time, I was getting as much research as I could on existing lottery winners and what their stories were."
That research led him to discover that most lottery winners ‘lose all the money within a short amount of time’.
He decided that he ‘wanted to be worth about 10 times as much’.
So, he built a team of trusted financial advisers, who set about turning his fortune into a billion-dollar mega-fortune in just 12 years.
There were some moments of extravagance, with the former manager and cycling instructor at Gold’s Gym taking 17 friends to Tahiti for a big holiday.
He also bought a load of bicycles, too.
Duke stayed at his job for an extra year after his windfall, and remembers his time there with fondness.
Speaking to KTVB last year, he said: "I really didn't think things could get better for me at the time,"
"I remember thinking that and within that week, this happened."
He also claims that he wasn’t just gambling mindlessly when he bought his Powerball tickets, having developed a ‘mathematical system’ for choosing which numbers to play before he won.
He says that before he won, he’d already started to take home $150 and $500 prizes, before scooping the big fish and changing his life forever.
Resisting the urge to ‘splurge’ on huge fancy purchases ended up proving to be the main winning strategy in the long run.Featured Image Credit: KTVB/YouTube