All the financial advice we got from celebs like Pitbull and Sylvester Stallone at the Real Estate Wealth Expo

All the financial advice we got from celebs like Pitbull and Sylvester Stallone at the Real Estate Wealth Expo

On Saturday, thousands of people shelled out up to $1,500 per ticket (although there was a $39 Groupon) to attend the Real Estate Wealth Expo, where rich celebs—including Sylvester Stallone, Pitbull and Alex Rodriguez—would be doling out financial advice. Sessions at the expo, which was held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, covered topics beyond real estate, like investing in Bitcoin or cannabis. Hypnotist and self-described “millionaire-maker” Marshall Sylver put audience members into a trance and showed them photos of his Rolls Royce, while pushing them to sign up for his $3,000 three-day seminar. Many of the day’s speakers had a penchant for the phrase, “This will change your life.” It was kind of like a Tony Robbins self-help seminar, with a side of get-rich-quick schemes.

We attended some of the day’s headline events, and they were indeed inspiring—albeit not quite in the intended way. Here’s what we learned.

All you need to work for Alex Rodriguez is a PhD.

Not the kind that you go to school for, though. According to A-Rod, the abbreviation stands for “poor, hungry and driven.” He also favours former athletes, or, as he puts it, “someone who’s been on a cheer team.”

There’s no excuse for single parents not to succeed.

Said Rodriguez: “After you put your kids to bed, what happens from 9 p.m. to midnight?”

Buying 500 apartments is easier than buying one.

According to A-Rod, property, like almonds, is cheaper when you buy in bulk.

A career in sports ensures you will always talk like an inspirational poster.

“Attitude determines altitude” was just one of the catchy phrases A-Rod used. Another good one: “I have a PhD in failing but a Master’s in getting back up.”

Never make A-Rod pay for stuff.

When answering a question from a gym owner about how to grow his business, Rodriguez recalled a time when he went to a gym with the Yankees and they tried to charge them. He was not happy about that.

All you need in life is air to breathe and legs to walk with.

Pitbull was also on the expo’s agenda, and this was one of his insightful business tips. Another was to, “Shut the fuck up and listen.”

Sometimes the best inspiration comes while you’re intoxicated.

While talking about his sources of inspiration, Pitbull recalled a time when he was five sake bombs deep and realized that “the biggest room in the world is the room for improvement.” Another, possibly more legitimate source of inspiration was his friend Luther Campbell, who told him that the music business is 10 per cent talent and 90 per cent business.

It’s probably better to pay to see Pitbull perform than to pay to listen to him offer sound financial advice.

He also compared his industry, the music business, with the cocaine industry in Miami in the 1980s. “You’ve got a product, you need to make sure it’s good and you need to do good business.” He capped off his talk by yelling “are you ready to party?” to a room full of suits, before leaving the stage for five minutes to change into a black leather outfit. Then, he performed five songs, complete with backup dancers and fire.

Who needs to prepare for paid speaking gigs?

Sylvester Stallone was the most hyped part of the seven-hour day. He entered to fireworks and confetti as “Eye of the Tiger” blared from the convention centre’s sound system. Despite all this, a few minutes into his speech he admitted he hadn’t actually prepared anything to say. “I’m just talking,” he said. But it’s okay, he explained, because fear is his best friend. In fact, he said, if he had another child he would name it Fear.

Obsessive competitiveness can be a good thing.

Apparently Stallone used to hate Arnold Schwarzenegger. “I used to lie in bed thinking of ways I would beat him up,” he said. “Everyone needs a good adversary. It drove me to excel.”

You may have to choose between success and family.

One of the audience members asked Stallone about his biggest disappointments and accomplishments—probably hoping for some career advice. Instead, Stallone talked about how he wished he had been a better parent. “Learn from me,” he said.

Don’t waste your time with a therapist.

According to Stallone, therapy isn’t necessary. “Money doesn’t buy you happiness,” he said. “It helps, if you’re not mental.”

Sometimes you might have to sell your dog at a 7/11.

Stallone said he was so poor at one point that he had to sell his bull mastiff because he couldn’t afford dog food. He only got $40 for the guy. This is a favourite story of his.