Would you marry a poor man
10 questions to ask a multimillionaire you would never dare ask
He doesn't even know how much he owns, says Christian Jagodzinski, around 55 million. His villa in Miami alone is worth 25 million. With a jacuzzi on the terrace, guest house, pool house and a home cinema where craftsmen have recreated the starry sky. If the 48-year-old wants to go on vacation, he'll rent a private jet and fly to Mykonos, he says. And when he goes out to party with his friends, he spends most of the money on champagne. On an evening like this, 10,000 dollars were quickly gone.
Jagodzinski, who comes from Regensburg, became a millionaire at the age of 29. He set up an online mail order book business, which he sold to Amazon. He now works in the real estate industry and rents serviced villas to the rich.
Also at VICE: A day with a Russian billionaire
What normal earners will never understand about a multimillionaire? "How much work it is to manage your money," says Jagodzinski. We have questions.
VICE: Money spoils character, they say. What is wrong with you
Christian Jagodzinski: I try not to let money spoil me. For example, many men no longer pay attention to their figure when they are rich. They say to themselves: "It doesn't matter if I have a stomach, I'll still find a woman." That's right. I still try to stay in shape. When you're rich, a lot of people approach you who are only interested in the money and not in the person. You have to be careful. That's why I tend to choose friends who also have money. Some might consider that arrogant.
How often do women approach you because they just want your money?
I am happily married and have two children. But yes, one way for women in the US to get money is to marry a rich man and then get divorced. I see that in rich friends. Russian women are particularly specialized in this. They make you look good, but you can tell that there is no feeling at all. Lots of men know that. But they don't mind. It's like an investment. Women want a little pocket money, sometimes a new bag, a new dress or new shoes. You just buy them that. And when they say, "Oh, I can't pay my rent," you're giving $ 500 or $ 1,000. Change. But you have to be careful not to get married and divorce and then she wants half of your fortune.
Isn't that a kind of prostitution when you have so much women you sleep withMoney there?
I don't have to. I am reasonably attractive. Some of my friends are not. I have a friend with several hundred million who brings up his money within five minutes. But let's not kid ourselves: A very important point for how attractive a woman finds a man depends on how much power he has and how much security he can give her. Both have to do with money. It's the other way around with women. Appearance accounts for perhaps 80 percent of attractiveness and 20 percent for inner values.
Have you ever had something with a woman who was richer than you?
Nope. That is also difficult. There are maybe 200,000 really rich people in the world. Almost all of them are men. And almost all of them are older than me. At 48, I'm a young millionaire.
Are you jealous of people who have more than you do?
You can always have more money. That is the big problem: when is it enough? If I had 100 million instead of 50 million, I could buy a luxury yacht and jet instead of charter them. But what's the point? I think once you have over 30 million you don't need more money.
How big is your fear of losing your money?
You can only lose that much money with bad investments, not with your lifestyle. In 2008, during the real estate crisis, my wealth slipped from 50 million to maybe 40 million. That doesn't bother me in my daily life. Still, it annoys me because it means I haven't done my job well.
Have you ever bribed someone?
No, but that's probably because I live in a country where that doesn't work. It's different in America. You take a good lawyer and then you get what you want legally. But when I need a table in a restaurant that is overbooked, I'll give someone 100 or 200 dollars.
How do you trick with taxes?
Not at all. America is already of interest to investors from a tax point of view, especially real estate investors. That's why I haven't paid any taxes there in the past few years. I already pay taxes from my winnings in St. Tropez. A couple of 100,000 dollars can come together quickly. I moved away from Germany at the time because my tax burden was over 50 percent. If more than half of what I earn is taken away from me, then I'm not at home there.
There's this weird Robin Hood thinking that you can take it from the rich. That can only come from someone who has no money himself. It hurts someone who is rich to be struck off 30 percent as much as it hurts someone who has little money. And when are you "rich"? Ask a poor farmer in Bangladesh who would tell you that someone with a car as "property" should pay the top tax rate. Much of the thinking here is false communist logic.
What are people doing wrong who are not as rich as you are?
They don't have that much bite. I think one problem is that society is doing relatively well. That people say: "Yeah, I would like to earn more money, but with as little effort as possible." That does not work. When you build a company, you do nothing but work, sleep, eat, work. And as a motivation it is very important that there is a pot of gold somewhere on the horizon. When I was 20 I said to myself: When I am 30 I want to earn at least a million a year. I've geared my life to get that.
If you walk past a homeless man, how much money do you give him?
It is very difficult. If you give him 20 euros, he'll go buy a bottle of whiskey. What is gained with it? Nothing. And a lot of beggars only do this because it's easier than doing a real job. Of course, I don't want to support that. Otherwise, at some point, everyone will just go begging. I once gave a homeless man a permanent job in Miami. And he's still working for us. It's much better than giving him money, even if it was enough to last a month.
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