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Stories of Serial Entrepreneurs

Serial entrepreneurs can’t seem to stop at one business, and don’t let failures throw them off course. While some of the best-known entrepreneurs, such as Richard Branson and Oprah Winfrey, have earned billions of dollars from their ventures, for many it's less about the potential for making money and more about the excitement of creating and nurturing a company.

Some serial entrepreneurs started their first homegrown businesses as children, while others got inspired as adults. They may be driven by their passion for a particular type of business, by the very idea of starting a business or by seeing a need that can be filled at a profit.

They tend to be independent, creative and energetic, and run the gamut from those running regional ventures to tycoons like Branson, whose business grew from a mail-order record store to a global, multi-industry conglomerate.

In many cases, serial entrepreneurs are able to use the proceeds from one success to build another, turning scrappy startups into valuable ventures that were either sold for millions of dollars or taken public. While they may share many traits, each entrepreneur has a path, and a story, all their own.

By Dinah Wisenberg Brin, Special to CNBC.com
Posted 21 Dec 2011

Photo: Erik Dreyer | Stone | Getty Images