Millionaires & Billionaires

The 'manager CEOs' who became billionaires

Jamie Dimon: Manager turned billionaire
Jamie Dimon: Manager turned billionaire

The vast majority of the billionaires in the U.S. made their money in one of two ways—they started a company, or they inherited their fortune or business.

But Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase, has shown another path to riches. As a corporate manager, he may have amassed enough stock and boosted the share price enough to join the 10-figure club.

According to Bloomberg, Dimon is now worth $1.1 billion. His stake in JPMorgan through shares and options is worth $485 million and he also has real estate valued at $32 million. In addition, he has wealth from "an investment portfolio seeded by proceeds" from his previous stint at Citigroup.

Jamie Dimon, chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase, in 2015.
David A. Grogan | CNBC

While highly unusual, Dimon isn't the first billionaire professional manager or executive who gained his wealth from stock in a company he didn't found or take public. The first manager-billionaire in the U.S. was believed to be Roberto Goizueta, CEO of Coca-Cola during the 1980s and 1990s. During his tenure, Coca-Cola's stock jumped more than 70-fold and Goizueta had stock and options totaling more than $1 billion.

More recently, the billionaire managers have been from finance. James Cayne, the colorful CEO and chairman of Bear Stearns became a billionaire on paper—before Bear Stearns collapsed during the financial crisis.

Richard Fuld, CEO of Lehman Brothers, also became a paper billionaire in 2007—before the investment bank became the largest bankruptcy in U.S. history in 2008.

Mike Mayo: Ludicrous comments by Jamie Dimon
Mike Mayo: Ludicrous comments by Jamie Dimon

Plenty of other finance chiefs have become billionaires—from hedge-funders to private-equity kings Steve Schwarzman and David Rubenstein. Citi founder Sandy Weill was a billionaire, but he created the company.

So while he may not be the first, Dimon may make history another way—by becoming the first manager-billionaire in finance to run a bank that thrives for decades after his leadership.