Joe turned his $600 annual salary into a $600 billion empire.

Here's the crazy story👇
Joe Tsai was born in January 1964 in Taipei, Taiwan.

His Dad was a lawyer and the 1st Taiwanese person to receive a degree from Yale Law.
His family leaves Taiwan and he enrolls at a US boarding school called Lawrenceville.

He goes to Yale undergrad and then earns a Yale Law degree.
His early career:

• works at law firm Sullivan & Cromwell
• joins private equity firm Rosecliff Inc

In 1995, Joe moves to Hong Kong to join a Swedish investment firm called Investor AB.
For 4 years, Joe led Asian investments and is making $800,000 per year.

He's 28 years old and seems to have everything planned out.
In May 1999, Joe's friend reaches out to him.

"Joe, you have to meet this guy in Hangzhou (China).

He's kind of crazy, but..."
So Joe jumps on a plane to China to meet with this guy.

His name is Jack Ma.

Joe quickly realizes that Ma only had a side project.

No incorporation.

No funding.

Just a website called Alibaba.
He had built one of China's first ever English websites.

It was a glorified online bulletin board for import and exports.
But Joe is still immediately impressed by Ma's personality.

Oozing charisma.

A big vision.

Jack Ma pitches him,

"Ok, we have these millions of Chinese factories.

How do I help them to get exposure to the Western world?"
Joe thought it was a good idea.

But nothing that innovative...

It was basically putting a bunch of Chinese factories online.
At this point, Jack Ma was teaching English.

16 of his these students had already joined him to work on Alibaba.

They were cramped in 1 apartment with 0 revenue.
After the meeting, Tsai thought to himself:

"Wow, this is a guy who can really get people together.

He's a great leader. He can really build something.”

A leader that can mobilize is a force to be reckoned with.
Joe quits his $800,000 per year job to join this business with 0 revenue and 28,000 users.

His first salary at Alibaba?

$600 per YEAR.
He was the first person outside of China to join the team.

And Joe's background as a lawyer came in handy.

His first jobs:

Incorporate Alibaba and raise money.
Over the next 20 years, Alibaba became one of the largest companies in the world:

• $600 billion valuation
• $100+ billion revenue
• 750 million total users

Joe acted as CFO, COO, and now Executive Vice Chairman.
Fun Fact: @joetsai1999 and I are both Yale lacrosse alums
Retweet the 1st tweet to inspire the next generation of business builders:

Ok, now please let me spend 67.75 hours digging up the best

• frameworks
• systems
• and business stories

so you don't have to.

➔ just follow me @chrishlad
"How can I pin this thread to my eyeballs?"

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More from @chrishlad

7 Jun
Can't get a job at Facebook?

You can always sell your startup to Zuckerberg for $19 billion.

Here's the crazy story of WhatsApp👇
Jan Koum met Brian Acton in 1998.

They spent 9 years working together at Yahoo and became good friends.

But in 2007, they both left Yahoo with some cash and no plans.
At first Acton and Koum applied to Facebook

...and failed

they were proud members of the "Facebook reject club"
Read 19 tweets
3 Jun
Frameworks are useless...

Unless you use them to solve specific problems.

Here are 10 frameworks that'll solve problems for you:
How to choose your next project:

If a project is successful, it should make the rest of your career look like a footnote.

How to write:

Your creativity is a backed-up pipe of waste water.

And the waste water must be emptied before you get to clear water.

The path to clear water (or great writing) is through bad first drafts.

Read 12 tweets
28 May
I just graduated from Yale and realized how much more there is to learn.

But I did uncover 7 lies you've been told about the world.

Here's the truth🧵

The information you learn in school matters.


Learning to learn is more important than any subject you study.

Networking is about collecting as many business cards as possible.


You can attract interesting people to you by sharing here on Twitter.

Once you do, developing these relationships is the most important thing you can do.
Read 10 tweets
25 May
I interviewed someone who told Steve Jobs he was wrong and got promoted.

She then built early smartphone companies worth billions.

Here's what I learned from Donna Dubinsky:
Be 100% focused on the person you're with.

• Don't think about what is next
• Don't think about what you just did

Just listen intently and magic happens.
Make a personal balance sheet of strengths and weaknesses

• What am I good at?
• What do I enjoy doing?
• What are my weaknesses?

Those are the answers for what to do in your career.
Read 12 tweets
20 May
Buying these 10 companies would've lost you $180 billion.

Wait never mind, you woulda been fired after a few.

Here are the 10 worst acquisitions of all time👇
Time Warner

• When: 2000
• Who bought: AOL
• How much: $111 billion

AOL forgot how to negotiate here.

They paid 70% extra for each share of Time Warner stock.

2 years later, AOL took a $99 billion loss.


• When: 1999
• Who bought: Yahoo
• How much: $4 billion

GeoCities let you build your own website in the 90s.

It failed but Geocities-izer survives as a way to make your website look retro.
Read 14 tweets
19 May
The founder of Hyundai stole a cow and ended up with a $13 billion empire.

Here's an epic story👇
Chung ju-yung was born in a small North Korean village in 1915.

His parents were poor farmers.

His dad grew rice while his mom ran the household and raised silkworms for extra money.

(the original side hustler!)
So Chung grows up poor but manages to graduate from 5th grade.

You may be thinking... yea man that isn't hard.

But this was an impressive accomplishment for his town!
Read 16 tweets

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