Two Stanford University dropouts, Oliver Jefferson Hancock III and Schuyler Goldstein, have become the latest in a string of overnight Silicon Valley billionaires.
Says Hancock III, "I dropped out during Freshman Week because my Contacts list was full. Sky dropped out a couple of weeks later when he found out Phi Delta Theta was banned from Stanford in 1998."
According to Goldstein, "We were sitting around my family's garage, smoking weed, and one of us--I think it was me but Olly says in his lawsuit it was him--whatever. Anyway, one of us mentions that a lot of billionaires got their start in a garage."
"And I say, 'Hey, wouldn't it be cool to build garages where people could go and have ideas that would make them a billion dollars?'"
"So Olly and I hop on my Ducati and head for his house, where we pitch the idea to his Dad, who likes it a lot and says he's in for a quarter mil and that we can move his Bentleys out of the garage and turn it into an incubator."
Hancock III continued, "And as soon as we get out of the room, Olly goes to the downstairs library to look up 'incubator,' and right away we can tell that a quarter mil isn't going to be enough to get the idea off the ground if we have to install air conditioning plus a humidifier and a CO2 regulator and an oxygen dispenser for a six car garage. So we decide to call the garage a garage and not tell his Dad."
"The next thing we do is use my connections to set up the office. We go over to my Aunt's furniture store and she doesn't recognize me, which I can't believe. So I mention I'm her nephew, Olly, and she's like, 'Who'? And I'm like, 'Oliver Jefferson Hancock III, duh.' So then I bargain her down on two Barcaloungers and what she said was the best Canadian rug she'd ever seen."
"And we take the Barcaloungers and the rug back to Sky's garage and we're in business. We smoke a little weed and come up with the name 'Start Up's,' which we thought was pretty cool because we were going to make places where people normally start up cars, but instead they're going to use our garages to come up with ideas for startups that will make them a billion dollars."
Hancock III and Goldstein then crafted their business plan.
"I and Olly pretty much right away decided our target market would be kids like us, the ones who have the pocket money to buy four car garages and whose parents or step-parents would like to turn their rooms into spare conservatories. And Olly wrote that down in cursive on an In-N-Out tray liner."
"Yeah. Then I messaged it over to my cousin, Aidan Goldstein, who dropped out of Stanford when he got his acceptance letter and started up 'You Won't Believe How Much It's Worth,' which is a startup that values startups. His Dad helped him get it off the ground after Aidan told him that $2 billion was too much to pay for the LA Clippers."
"In a couple minutes Aidan Tweets back that 'Start Up's' is worth something like $1.2 billion and that it could be more if we decided to actually build a garage. But since we didn't want the hassle of having to buy like hammers and wood and glue, we sold out to Yahoo for $1.5 billion."
Asked what they saw as their next challenge, Goldstein said, "We want to kick back for a while and smoke a little weed. Then we'll probably go into my conservatory and begin thinking about something that's going to make us another billion dollars. It might have something to do with garages."
Hancock III concurred.
"Like my Dad says, 'When one door closes, another door opens.'"