For Dan Bilzerian, it’s certainly a different way to make a fortune, which he’s parlayed into a life of luxury, complete with loads of beautiful women, an impressive gun collection, and a public persona that has earned him the title of “King of Instagram.”
Find out how he accumulated hundreds of millions of dollars playing poker, what he’s doing with that money, and why his luck might be running out.
His Shady Family
For a man as brash as Bilzerian, perhaps it’s not too surprising that his father wasn’t exactly an upstanding member of society.
His father, Paul, rose to become a multi-millionaire in the 1980’s, making several successful real estate investments, which then a successful hostile takeover of the Singer Cooperation, a U.S. government defense contractor, in the late 80’s.
However, amidst the takeover, Paul Bilzerian was being investigated for multiple cases of stock fraud. Many investors and even some reporters thought he did nothing wrong. But, in 1989, when Dan was 10 years old, his father was convicted, and eventually served about a year in a federal prison camp.
Later on, he was ordered him to pay over $62 million in restitution, but the government only received $3.7 million, as Paul eventually declared bankruptcy. However, many think Paul wasn’t broke and instead hid his money to keep it away from the government.
Dan said his father didn’t give him much attention as a kid, saying
“I guess that’s why I’m such a flashy lunatic”.
While Dan Bilzerian didn’t have the greatest relationship with his dad, he at least got some help from him, the lunatic influence, notwithstanding.
Bilzerian admits that he did receive some money from a trust fund that his father set up for him and his brother Adam, who is also a professional poker player. The true amount of money his dad gave him, though, is not known.
So how much money does Dan Bilzerian have and how did he accumulate all of it?
How Much Money
The exact amount of how much money he has isn’t pinned down, but regardless, the number is staggering.
Various sources disagree on the final amount, but they do agree that Bilzerian’s net worth is at least $150 million. Some sources have pegged that number as high as $200 million.
What He Does With That Money
Anyone who has ever taken one look at Dan Bilzerian’s Instagram account won’t doubt for a second that he is absolutely loaded.
His pictures convey a life of luxury and excess, featuring many pictures of him with many scantily clad, or even totally nude women. Those pictures are often taken in tropical locations and frequently also involve lots of booze and a lot of guns.
Other pictures include shots with celebrities like Tom Hardy, Post Malone, and Floyd Mayweather or just with stacks and stacks of cash.
As his 31 million Instagram followers can attest to, he is a man who spends his money on having as much fun as possible.
$250 Millions Mansion
Just because he spends a lot of his time globetrotting with a large amount of beautiful women doesn’t mean that he doesn’t splurge at home.
In 2018, he began paying $200,000 per month to rent out a mansion built by real estate investor Bruce Makowsky that was once listed on the market for $250 million.
That rent money is getting him a mountainside palace that covers 31,000 square feet and is worth an estimated $60 million. If it’s not the most luxurious rental in the world, it can’t be far off.
Features of the Mansion
The house, which boasts 12 bedrooms and a staggering 25 bathrooms, has a rather long list of impressive amenities:
- A 5,600 square-foot master bedroom, which by itself is more than double the size of a standard American family home
- A 40,000 square-foot patio that spans nearly an acre
- 5 bars throughout the house
- Bowling alley
- Movie theater
- Pool with water falls
- Putting Green
- Basketball court
- 14-car garage
- Among other things
Oh yeah, that’s his second residence, or well it was. He just vacated the property in July, 2020, much to the delight of his other filthy rich neighbors who were not a fan of huge parties, constant noise, and pyrotechnics, and were considering legal action against him.
So he’s down to just one other residence—a $10 million mansion in Las Vegas he bought in 2018 that features a golf simulator and hockey rink, among other things that most people could only dream of.
In addition to the pricey bachelor pads, at various other times, he has been reported as owning thousands of guns, multiple million-dollar cars, a $9 million jet, and $21 million yacht, though whether he still owns all or any of that isn’t exactly clear.
With his money and connections, Bilzerian has also dabbled in acting, appearing in films such as Olympus Has Fallen and The Equalizer. Additionally, he contributed $1 million to the production of Lone Survivor in exchange for several minutes of screen time in the film.
And on top of it, like many celebrities have done, he also announced a presidential run, doing so in 2015. As celebrity political campaigns tend do go, he did not get far, and he wound up endorsing Donald Trump. If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em, I guess.
While Dan Bilzerian did not become president, he at least can take solace in living like a king.
But okay, really, where does he find the money for all this?
How He Makes Money
So we established earlier that Dan Bilzerian is worth at least $150 million, he has trust fund money, and he played poker professionally,
He did not play professionally for long and his only appearance in the World Series Poker came in 2009, where he finished 180th and walked away with a little over $36,000—not bad, but far from $150 million.
So he’s not that good at poker…
Understandably, his poker acumen has been scrutinized, with former poker professional Doug Polk going so far as to analyze Bilzerian’s poker skills in a YouTube video, in which he declared that Bilzerian doesn’t behave like a player capable of winning regularly.
Another poker professional believes that Bilzerian is merely using poker to cultivate his image.
In either case, Bilzerian no longer plays professionally, though he still indicates that poker is his primary form of income…
…saying that he plays poker in extremely high-stakes private games, including one game that he claimed involved Major League Baseball superstar Alex Rodriguez.
In 2013, he claimed to have once won nearly $11 million in a single night, while also claiming to have won over $50 million playing poker in 2014 alone. To put it in perspective, the most money won in an entire career in professional poker is the $55.5 million won by Bryn Kenney.
Of course, gambling involves losses too, and Bilzerian claims that he’s lost as much as $3.6 million in a single session.
The caveat with all these numbers is, though, no one knows if any of his claims are true—or at least no one else has confirmed they are.
Not all fun and games
With all of those claimed poker winnings in his bank account, his whirlwind lifestyle has been mostly all fun and games, but he’s encountered a few bumps along the way.
In high school, he was expelled and asked to permanently leave the state of Utah after bringing his father’s M16 from the Vietnam War to school to show his friends. He ultimately wound up joining the Navy, which didn’t last long.
In 2014, he was sued twice over injuries he caused to models, then topped it off by being arrested at Los Angeles International Airport on an outstanding warrant for bomb-making charges.
That charge stems back to his long-standing love of firearms, which caused a minor international incident in 2018. That year, he traveled to his ancestral homeland of Armenia with his father and brother to become Armenian citizens, as well as join the Armenian military.
While there, he visited a shooting range in the Artsakh province, which has long been contested by neighboring Azerbaijan, who filed a note of protest to the United States and went so far as to place Bilzerian on their international wanted list. Thankfully that didn’t escalate any further than that.
Even scarier, he’s had some major health scares due to his lifestyle. He claims to have suffered two heart attacks due to cocaine and Viagra, both before the age of 25. More recently, he had a pulmonary embolism that was chalked up to poker, booze, and sex.
Ever the gambler, after his most recent scare, he checked himself out of the hospital early and went for a run, tweeting “I’ll bet a million dollars I don’t die. Any takers?”
In the aftermath of all those recent troubles, he went in to his first real business endeavor, launching Ignite, a cannabis company in 2018…which promptly manage to blow through $50 million in its first year of operation. Now the company is teetering on the brink of collapse and Bilzerian is being sued by his former president, so Ignite appears to be going up in flames, pun absolutely intended.
The question now for Bilzerian is whether that’s merely a setback, or if his entire house of cards is collapsing. All we can do is wait and see.
If you had as much money as Dan Bilzerian, would you live a wild life like him, or choose something a little more subdued? Let us know in the comments!