Alibaba Founder Says Being Filthy Rich Is a 'Great Pain'

Jack Ma says he's 'not happy,' that spending money is harder than it seems
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 12, 2014 12:57 PM CST

Jack Ma feels your pain—that is, if you regularly experience the pain of being extremely, insanely rich and have to endure spending all your money all the time. The Alibaba founder spoke yesterday to CNBC from Alibaba headquarters in Hangzhou, China, telling David Faber that being China's richest man is a "great pain" and that he hasn't been especially happy over the past few weeks. "People say, 'Well, Jack, rich … is good.' Yeah, it is good, but …it's a great pain because when you're [the] richest person in the world, everybody [is] surrounding you for money," he lamented. "Today when I walk on the street, people look at [me] in a different—I want people to see this is [an] entrepreneur, this is a guy who is having fun of himself, and I want to be myself."

Ma added that "this month I'm not very happy—I think too much pressure," hinting that his stress may be tied to Alibaba's recent IPO, said to be the biggest IPO ever, notes Forbes. "Maybe the stock goes so up, maybe people have high expectations on you, maybe I think too much about the future and have too many things to worry about," he said to Faber. "IPO is great because ... I'm happy with the results, but … when people think too highly of you, you have the responsibility to calm down and be yourself." One of the ways he hopes to relieve this unrelenting monetary ache is by delving more into philanthropy like Bill Gates does. "Spending money is much more difficult than making money," he said. "You made a lot of money, you gotta spend it. And you cannot ... buy 10 bags and 11 houses. … You want to spend money in a business way that can really help people." (In other tech news, "Guccifer," who hacked the Bush family and others, says what he did was "right.")

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