How Spanx founder Sara Blakely makes and spends her $1.1 billion fortune – DIGIWIZ CENTRAL

How Spanx founder Sara Blakely makes and spends her $1.1 billion fortune

Sara Blakely.

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Sara Blakely, founder of the shapewear brand Spanx, is worth an estimated $1.1 billion.She lives in a 10,000-square-foot home in Atlanta and owns properties in three other states.She adds to her fortune as a public speaker and guest shark on “Shark Tank.”

Sara Blakely‘s $1.1 billion net worth began with scissors and a pair of pantyhose.

Since creating that prototype nearly 30 years ago, her shapewear and clothing company, Spanx, has grown into a $1.2 billion empire.

Here’s how Blakely makes and spends her self-made fortune.

Sara Blakely’s shapewear brand, Spanx, made her one of the world’s youngest self-made female billionaires.
Sara Blakely attends the launch of Haute Contour by Spanx at Saks Fifth Avenue in 2009.

Joe Kohen/WireImage/Getty Images

Inspiration struck in 1998 when Blakely cut the feet off her pantyhose to wear under a pair of pants for a smoother look, according to Spanx’s official website. Two years later, her body-shaping invention went into production and was named one of “Oprah’s Favorite Things,” making it a favorite of celebrities and everyday customers alike.

In 2012, Blakely appeared on the cover of Forbes as the world’s then-youngest self-made female billionaire at age 41. Today, at 52 years old, she ranks 22nd on Forbes‘ list of America’s self-made women with a net worth of $1.1 billion.

In 2021, Blackstone bought a majority stake in Spanx, escalating the company’s value to $1.2 billion.
Spanx founder Sara Blakely in 2021.

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To celebrate the sale, Blakely gifted all Spanx employees two first-class Delta plane tickets to anywhere in the world and $10,000 cash.

“I really want every employee to celebrate this moment in their own way and create a memory that will last them a lifetime!” Blakely wrote on Instagram.

Blakely appears as a guest shark on ABC’s “Shark Tank” helping other entrepreneurs make it big.
Sara Blakely (center) with Mark Cuban (left) and Kevin O’Leary (right) on “Shark Tank.”

Eric McCandless via Getty Images

In 2016, Variety reported that the celebrity judges on “Shark Tank” made $50,000 per episode. Blakely appeared as a guest shark on seasons nine and 10.

She travels frequently to speak to audiences about entrepreneurship, overcoming obstacles, and women’s empowerment.
Sara Blakely speaks at an event.

Craig Barritt/Getty Images

Blakely’s speaking fees range from $100,000 to $200,000, according to booking agent AAE Speakers.

“Even though I give speeches all the time, I still get scared,” she wrote in an Instagram post in August. “Public speaking is on my long list of fears (along with flying which I also do all the time). The only way to build courage is to feel the fear and do it anyway.”

Blakely primarily lives in Atlanta, where the Spanx headquarters are located, but she owns several other homes.
Atlanta, Georgia.

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Blakely owns a 10,000-square-foot home in Atlanta that features a gumball machine and sauna and steam rooms, People magazine reported.

In 2011, she purchased two lots on Florida’s Clearwater Beach for $8.8 million, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

She also owns homes in New Fairfield, Connecticut, and La Jolla, California, according to a 2011 New Yorker profile. She purchased a 37th-floor apartment overlooking Central Park in New York City for $12.11 million in 2008, then sold it for $30 million in 2014, The New York Daily News reported.

She married Marquis Jet co-founder Jesse Itzler in 2008 and has four children.
Jesse Itzler and Spanx founder Sara Blakely in 2012.

Skip Bolen/Getty Images for Spanx

Blakely and Itzler met at a charity poker tournament in 2006 and bonded over not knowing anything about the game, Business Insider previously reported, citing a report in Atlanta Weddings.

They wed in a lavish ceremony at the Gasparilla Inn in Boca Grande, Florida, with over 400 guests in attendance, The New York Times reported.

Despite her billionaire status, a 2014 Wall Street Journal profile revealed that she drives a Toyota minivan to work.

She owns a minority stake in the Atlanta Hawks and has invested in other female founders.
The Atlanta Hawks mascot.

Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

In 2022, Blakely invested in the skincare brand Supergoop!, which is also part of Blackstone’s portfolio of businesses, according to a Business Wire press release.

She has also committed to giving at least half of her wealth to charity by signing the Giving Pledge.
Sir Richard Branson and Sara Blakely at an event for the Sara Blakely Foundation.

Rick Diamond/WireImage/Getty Images

In 2013, Blakely became the first self-made female billionaire to sign the Giving Pledge created by Bill Gates, Melinda French Gates, and Warren Buffett, according to the Sara Blakely Foundation. Her foundation has since given millions to charities focusing on uplifting women and girls around the world.

“I pledge to invest in women because I believe it offers one of the greatest returns on investment,” she wrote in a letter on the foundation’s website.

Read the original article on Business Insider
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