Bono is becoming the richest man in rock, and it has nothing to do with his record sales.
The U2 frontman's private equity firm, Elevation Partners, was an early investor in Facebook, which hit the stock market Friday at a record valuation for an internet firm, launching the millionaire singer into the billionaire club.
The payout for the firm's 2.3 percent stake in the social network site was said to be worth an estimated $1.5 billion, Benzinga reported. That's more than seven times the $195 million Bono collected from record sales and touring the last two years and enough to make the rock star, who has an estimated worth of $900 million, a billionaire.
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It will also make him the richest rocker in the world, ahead of Paul McCartney who's reigned atop the industry's wealth charts with his estimated $1 billion fortune.
Bono is the one musician among a slew of finance heavyweights (like Goldman Sachs, Russian tycoon Yuri Milner), tech hotshots (Zynga co-founder Mark Pincus, PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel) and close associates, friends and family members of Facebook founder Marc Zuckerberg, who were set to become (if they aren't already) billionaires overnight.
Excitement about a legitimate rock star's inclusion in the wonky group inspired rumors that Bono might be the one to ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange Friday. He wasn't.