U2’s front man, Bono, has denied reported that he has become the richest musician in the world after savvy Facebook investments. Bono spoke about his company, Elevation Partners, while attending the Global Food Summit in Washington DC on Friday.
It has been reported that Bono, whose company owns 2.3 percent of Facebook’s shares, would become a millionaire on Friday when Mark Zuckerberg’s company would float on the stock exchange. Bono’s private equity firm, Elevation Partner bought $90 million in Facebook shares in 2009.
However speaking to Andrea Mitchell, on MSNBC, in Washington, Bono denied that he was worth over $1.5 billion, which would mean he was wealthier than The Beatle’s Paul McCartney.
He said “Contrary to reports, I'm not a billionaire or going to be richer than any Beatle - and not just in the sense of money, by the way, The Beatles are untouchable - those billionaire reports are a joke.”
He added "In Elevation, we invest other people's money – endowments, pension funds. We do get paid of course. But you know, I felt rich when I was 20 years old and my wife was paying my bills. Just being in a band, I've always felt blessed.
“I got interested in technology because I'm an artist… Technology is huge, I wanted to learn about it. People might say that's odd, but I think it's odd if artists aren't interested in the world around them. I'm always chasing that. Facebook are an amazing team, a brilliant team, it's a technology that brings people together."
Bono also explained why he was in Washington at the Global Food Summit and attending fundraising events for President Obama.
He told MSNBC “You know, no one wants to see those extended bellies. No one wants to see children -- emaciated children. Hunger is a ridiculous thing. And we know what to do in order to fix it. There's, you know, these whole new approaches to agriculture to increase productivity, et cetera, et cetera.
“But what's key about today's announcement is that the president of the United States is supporting African ideas on how to fix their problem. There are country-owned, country-devised plans in 30 African countries. And that's what it will take to get to that 50 million people taken out of -- out of hunger over the next decade.
“So it's -- that's what's different. It's partnership, it's not the old paternalism. These are sort of horizontal relationships, not vertical ones.”
Here’s footage of Bono speaking at the Global Food Summit in Washington DC: