Ted Turner is a eccentric media mogul in the United States. His cavalier attitudes towards conventional wisdom and his willingness to take aggressive risks made him a billionaire. Here is some of his advice for entrepreneurs.
Take Advantage of Emerging Technologies
One of the ways Ted Turner became a great success was by looking to the future in technology. Ted Turned saw the potential of cable television in the 1970’s. He revolutionized how the world consumed news and media when he launched Cable News Network (CNN), the first 24 hour cable news network. Turner saw the success of 24 hours radio stations and thought that the same he could apply same model to newly emerging cable television. He launched CNN in the beginning of 1982 with a 30 million dollars. Even with a budget one tenth the size of CBS and NBC his network quickly became a major player in television news media.
Turner’s vision for the future of cable television was not limited to televised news. Turner used cable television to revolutionize how film production companies monetized their products. Before the days of cable television film production companies had a hard time generating revenue from films after they left the box office. Movies that did not do well in theaters were never heard from again and films that did do well would occasionally get aired on broadcast television. Tuner realized that cable television was a perfect outlet to rebroadcast old movies. In 1986 Turner purchased the entire library of Metro-Goldwyn Myers Studios (MGM) for $1.5 billion and launched Turner Classic Movies (TCM), Turner Network Television (TNT), Turner Broadcast System (TBS) to broadcast his newly acquired films. The move was a stroke of genius; the purchase gave him control of all of MGM’s films made before 1986 and all Warner Brothers films made before 1950. His new library contained some of the most successful and popular films ever made. The purchase included: Casablanca, Gone with the Wind, The Wizard of Oz, The Maltese Falcon, Apocalypse Now, Rocky and many other classics.
Live Life as an Adventure
There are few people alive today who could be better be described as the embodiment of the expression “carpe diem” than Ted Turner. One of the best examples of his bold mentality in action came when he purchased two professional sports teams. In 1977 Turner purchased the Atlanta Braves baseball team. In his first season as owner he took over as manager. His team was in the midst of a 16 game losing streak and he was convinced that he could not do any worse than that. He would eventually relinquish the job back to the manager but his attitude showed that he was bold enough to take on any challenge. He shows that even bad moments can be turned into an adventure.
Green is the future
Turner thinks that next great entrepreneurs will be innovators in the field of green technology. Turner has invested a large part of his fortune in his belief that humans will have to move away from fossil fuels. Turner owns over 2 million acres in the United States as well as land in the Patagonia mountains in Argentina. His land is well situated for “green revolutions.” His land holdings in the Great Plain of the Mid-West are perfectly situated for wind turbines; his land in New Mexico is prime territory for solar energy.