How much money have you lost in a day? In this episode, I’m going to tell the story of how I lost $11 million in one day, and some secrets I learned that helped me become a digital monetizer.

How I Lost $11 Million in 1 Day

In the spring of 2000, I was a 25-year-old CEO of a publicly-traded SAAS (software as a service) company. My beautiful wife Crystal and I had been married for about 16 months, we had bought our first home, and she was pregnant with our first daughter.

In just 5 years between 1995 and 2000, the Nasdaq had skyrocketed more than 500% from under 1,000 to more than 5,000. The Nasdaq peaked at 5,048 on March 10, 2000, and by October 4, 2002, had plummeted by 76% to only 1,139. By the end of 2001, most dotcom stocks had gone bust. (Source: Investopedia)

The Collateral Damage

When the dotcom bubble burst my company had not yet reached profitability and was dependent on investors who were funding our software development and marketing. I painfully remember losing $11 million in a single day on the stock market, all from my ownership in my company. When the dotcom bubble burst, investors stopped almost all of their investments in Internet companies. After all of our investments dried up, our investors and I lost the company. I feel horrible for the investors who trusted me and lost their investments, the great team members who lost their jobs, and the hardships that resulted for their families.

The next year, as I focused on growing a horribly unprofitable Internet business, I only earned about $11,000 total for the entire year or about 1% of what I had lost in a single day the previous year. My family survived in part because of the generosity of others, such as my sweet mother-in-law, Laree Ullery, who regularly brought us groceries and diapers for our new baby girl.

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