Alexis Ohanian is probably best known for helping to start Reddit and selling it 16 months later for $10 million when he was only 23. He is also well-known for marrying tennis superstar Serena Williams in 2017. But today he is also known as a savvy start-up investor.
Ohanian, now 37, recently founded venture capital fund Seven Seven Six and has invested in companies like Impossible Foods and the soccer digital collectible platform Sorare. He admits, though, that he made some money mistakes along the way, especially early on.
Ohanian says if he could go back and change one financial choice he’s made, he would not have hired and relied on a financial advisor. “I was really lucky. I sold Reddit at 23 and we made more money than my folks had made in their entire working lives, and I thought I don’t want to screw this up, which is a good first impulse,” Ohanian tells CNBC Make It.
But Ohanian said he later realized how important it was to really understand where his money was going, rather than just paying someone else to make decisions. “Hiring someone else to think about all of that is an excellent sort of initial crutch,” he says. “But you don’t want to stay indebted to someone else’s expertise.”
Ohanian says he has learned that it’s important to do the work and teach yourself the ins and outs of investing. Ohanian says, “This is the advice I would give to anyone: take the time to learn about this stuff yourself before giving it to someone else. There are so many great resources online now that you can use to do the work.”
In an interview to promote Stella Artois’ new “Stella Mutual” ad campaign and contest (in which contestants can win a work-life balance consulting session with Ohanian and $2,500), he says that another mistake he’s made is working too much, which his wife William has taught him not to do.
Ohanian says Williams taught him that overworking is not the way to keep being great. “Especially as an athlete, you need to spend as much time recovering and regrouping as you do working, training, and practising,” he says.
“If you don’t do that, you won’t be at your best for a long time.”