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David Rubenstein: How I Blew It on Facebook

David Rubenstein
David Rubenstein

Private equity kingpin David Rubenstein missed his chance to be one of the first investors in Facebook.

He told the story at the Milken Institute Global Conference 2011 in Beverly Hills at the end of a panel on private equity.

His son-in-law was a high school classmate of Mark Zuckerberg. When Zuckerberg was planning on dropping out of Harvard to launch the social network, the son-in-law asked Rubenstein if he would like to meet with the Facebook founder. Zuckerberg was looking for investors to fund the new website.

“I said to myself, what are the chances of this guy becoming the next Bill Gates? So I didn't meet with him,” Rubenstein said. “So now I have to work for a living."

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