Tag Archives: george clooney

Why is George Clooney so rich?

We are all familiar with all the advice on how to get rich. However here I analyse George Clooney’s wealth and provide a possible reason for his wealth.

George Clooney apparently earns $15m per film

Assume Clooney appears for 60 minutes of a 90 minute film

That works out at $250,000 per minute on screen.

George likes coffee, in my local supermarket Lavazza beans are $30 for a 2.2Ib bag.

So if he visits my supermarket can he buy coffee faster than he earns money?

The self-serve barcode swipe machine in my local store will process 9 items a minute (thanks to help checkout guy in my local store!).

The guy on the checkout tells me he can swipe up to 20 items a minute.


So if George Clooney goes mad and does it himself he could spend $270 in a minute on coffee, or $600 if he gets the checkout guy to do it. (and that is without waiting to pay or swiping his loyalty card for air-miles (remember Up in the Air?).

This leaves George with a net profit of at least $249,400 per minute.  So this isn’t going to work.

So George likes TV (he was on it for much of the 1990s), so what if he pops down to my local electrical retailer, and spends up big on Sony 55 inch 3-D LCD TV screens priced at $3300?

Now lets assume these items are stacked right next to the checkout (to save time hauling them through the store) and the swiping rate is also no more than 20 per minute.

Now he can spend $66,000 per minute.   This still leaves him with a profit of $184,000 per minute.


Clearly consumer goods is not the way to go.

So maybe cars or houses are the go. The trouble is, with all the paper work, he couldn’t buy one in a minute.

Ebay auctions are out because they last at least 5 days.

So what if George has some help?  Lets go back to that TV retailer. Now suppose we have  his old friends from ER helping him Anthony Edwards (Dr. Mark Greene)  Sherry Stringfield (Dr. Susan Lewis) and Noah Wylie (Med Student) helping him by also swiping 20 TVs a minute. That’s 80 TVs a minute.

Now we have 4 x $66,000 = $264,000 per minute which exceeds his income.

So here could be a recipe for bankruptcy for George. Would George Clooney be so rich after that?

BUT each TV box is about 60 x 32 x 5 inches and weighs 70lbs and they dont come from nowhere. Somebody has to freight them to the store. Each semi trailer has 40,000lbs cargo capacity. So there are 570 TVs in each load.

So George and ER friends would go through a semi-trailer every 7 minutes. Is that why George Clooney is so rich?

Now allowing for backing out the empty semi-trailer from the loading bay and manoeuvring the waiting full semi into the bay, and allowing for a team of loaders to offload the TVs, even if they were throwing them off the truck, onto forklifts taking 10 TVs at a time, each trip will take at least 30 seconds to get it from the truck to the check out – that is about 30 minutes per load!

But George’s team are buying ‘em at a rate of 7 mins per truckload!!!

So, in the best case scenario the store has 570 TVs stocked by the checkout, with a full semi-trailer to go. Let’s suppose they start offloading the TVs once George’s team starting their purchasing.

In the first minute the team purchase 80 TVs.

In that time the stockers, re-stock at a rate of 10 TVs every 30 seconds.  That is 60 a minute, or a net shortfall of 20 TVs a minute!

So I calculate that after only 30 minutes of this madness, George would be the proud owner of 1590 Sony TVs, and be owed 40 the store couldn’t stock in time and in the process would still be over $10 million richer.

And that is why George Clooney is so rich.

Up in the air part 2

I have just got through what for me seemed like an unbelievably busy schedule. It started on March 5th when I flew out to Vancouver from Sydney. I arrived there over the weekend, and then on Monday I opened the fantastic CDC conference, I went straight from the gig to a business lunch, and then back for a business dinner. The following day I give an impromtu session at the conference, and another meeting in the evening. The following day I do a full-day workshop, and then another the day after and then two more the day after that, and then straight to the airport for flight to Sydney. I arrive Sunday, and Monday fly to Brisbane. Spend Tues-Fri running all day sessions (essentially talking for 8 hours non-stop – people seem to like it!!!). Arrive home about 9:30pm Friday night. Get a weekend at home. Yipee. The following week, Mon – Thurs in Syd talking all day. Friday private client, write a report, catch up in office. Sat and Sun talking all day teaching a Post Grad Certificate. Take taxi from University on Sunday to airport to Melbourne. Repeat 3 days of talking in Melbourne. Home on Maundy Thursday. Get break over Easter. Phew. Now this probably sounds nothing special to many of you, and I had a thoroughly great time, but there come’s a time when waiting longer for your luggage to come through the carousel than the flight (the Sunday night in Melbourne Grand Prix weekend) becomes teeth gratingly tedious.

Anyone fancy getting loads of frequent flyer points, free grog most afternoons in a members-only lounge, and staying in four or five star hotels? If you answered yes to any of these offers, the likelihood is that you have never had to travel regularly on business. Ever wondered why anyone would be crazy enough to go camping for their holidays amongst all those bitey things? It is because the wearied business traveller cannot face the prospect of yet another cramped and delayed flight, a cold room service meal, and another whopping credit card bill covering said flight, room with no windows, oh and the reasonably priced $30 English breakfast! Go and look around the campsites of our great country, they are chock full of the cream of Australian business desperate to break the cycle of steak in red wine jus, and Eggs Benedict. But the real holiday is for their overwrought and burnt out credit card.
The life of the business traveller is one long battle of wits and attrition with the soulless accounts clerk who delights in stalling, quibbling, and ultimately rejecting about 99.9% of travel expense claims. Meanwhile the benighted road warrior must explain themselves and their dirty little dietary habits (you needed a whole bottle of wine with your dinner?) not only to half the office, but also they must explain themselves to their partners and family.
Have you ever tried moaning to your partner down the phone from your business class hotel about the limitations of the room service menu and that you have been forced to eat a Filet mignon again? Normally such a conversation must be shouted over the background noise of home as your loved one battles with demands from your children for three different types of frozen rubbish to be served for dinner.
This is not the end of the domestic troubles because you have been obliged like most travellers to use your own credit card to fund your bacchanalian excesses in corporate hotel land. No sooner than you pop your bill into the express check-out box, your partner calls up in tears/rage/indignation/all of the preceding. You will find that they are at the check out of a store surrounded by a coterie of smirking on-lookers thoroughly enjoying the site of a credit card that has just refused them credit.
The Reserve Bank credit card figures for December 2007 indicated that of the $42.76 billion owing on credit cards, $30.07 billion attracts interest payments – in other words we haven’t fully paid off each month a collective $30 odd billion. Now I don’t know about you, but when my credit card reaches $30 billion, it tends to refuse to let me play anymore. The point is, approximately 70% of credit card users do not pay off their balance in full each month. Supposing that business travellers are represented in this group, then it means many who are travelling on business are adding their travel expenses onto an already burdened card. If our traveller is already living on credit, then the costs of travel may dry up their much needed cash flow. Their kids cannot eat while they choke on their fillet mignons.
Alan Shipman, writing in Finance Week 5th November 2007, says it can take “up to seven weeks for some employees to get their expenses claims met – often taking longer in larger companies, with more authorisation and approval stages to go through, and any manual processes sometimes adding days at a time”.
One solution to this problem is the corporate credit card, which removes the need for the employee to use their own cash, but it means the company sees in detail how you are using it. Also, you might be issued a card which looks like it’s corporate, but you are ultimately responsible for it. Here, you still have to claim for everything as though you are using your personal card and it is your responsibility to pay if off. Not only are you liable for any late fees or interest, there are stories of employees being pursued for card liabilities when companies fold.
In a time when there is a lot of rhetoric about employee engagement, wouldn’t it be great for employers to actually cover the costs of travel directly, rather than getting their employees to effectively advance their employer a loan of their own money which the hapless employee has to beg and grovel to get back? I don’t get me started on trying to claim tips, and other minor cash transactions! Think about that the next time you are envious of corporate travellers.

Up in the air

It is not uncommon for people to mistake me for George Clooney, then soon after the alarm clock goes off and I stop dreaming. However having recently watched George’s latest Oscar nominated Up in the Air, I began to see some similarities with the character he plays ( I am writing this in Vancouver Airport). In Up in the Air the Clooney’s character is addicted to travelling around the states. He has all the frequent flyer points he needs, the lounge memberships and all the right moves to get through an airport quickly. This is a wry look at a life that many including me often life. For me the rare the occasions when I can step off a plane and not have to hang around for luggage are cherished. The elation at walking straight out without spending an extra five minutes is amazing and also totally ridiculous. Get a life. Well precisely.

There is a whole token economy going here from priority booking, to getting the right seats, or pleading or queueing for the upgrades in the lounge, and then which lounge, surely not the regular lounge – what if someone sees me. This is of course completely and utterly insane. But the whole process of going through the airport is odd. Indeed as I type this I hear over the tannoy “anyone who has a middle seat who wants to sit in the emergency isle see me on gate 83” – eh? They are creating a market trading seats and privileges. What on earth is all this about?

Well the process of going through an airport is alienating and dehumanising. You are searched, questioned, virtually stripped courtesy of I.T. You remove your shoes and belt and empty your pockets, a bit like Jimmy Cagney being processed into jail. You no longer exist, you are a passport number and a flight number, and then a frequent flyer number. In this bizarre role the only status are the miles you have, the status credits on your card. You can tell a lot about a man from the colour of his luggage tags.

I have to go now, because I heard over the PA that there is a chance of an upgrade if I run to gate 84, do a hula dance in my socks and show my platinum Chairmans Club, titanium Board members privilege card. Of course I am above such things, but could I live for the whole flight knowing some undeserving type has secured the prized seat near the door when it could have been mine?

Flying used to associated with freedom, now why do I get the feeling that I am rehearsing to become one of Pavlov’s dogs?