Bucky the Bookkeeper Is Now Worth a Lot of Bucks…

His colleagues called him Bucky the Bookkeeper.

His company was on the brink of bankruptcy multiple times.

His credit card was declined while trying to rent a car in 1974.

Six years later, he was worth $178 million.

Today, he is worth $37 billion.

Do you know who this person is, or what company he started?

Bill Gates named ********* one of his five favorite books of 2016 and called it “an amazing tale, a refreshingly honest reminder of what the path to business success really looks like. It’s a messy, perilous, and chaotic journey, riddled with mistakes, endless struggles, and sacrifice. ******** opens up in ways few CEOs are willing to do.”

“The best book I read last year was *****.  ***** is a very, wise, intelligent and competitive fellow who is also a gifted storyteller.”- Warren Buffett

”A touching, highly entertaining adventure odyssey, with much to teach about innovation and creativity. **** takes us back to the Big Bang of the ***, recalls how he first begged and borrowed from reluctant banks, how he assembled a crew of eccentric but brilliant misfits, how they all worked together to build something unique and paradigm-changing. An inspiration for everyone with an unconventional dream.”—Michael Spence, Nobel-prize winning economist

Here’s a hint: the name of the book is Shoe Dog

Still not sure?

It’s a memoir by Phil Knight, the creator of Nike.

It’s an entertaining and informative look at the history of Nike, and is the Read to Lead** book for this year’s incoming freshmen in Villanova’s School of Business.

Highly recommended.

Hidden gem: you’ll find out exactly how much Nike paid the graphics designer who created the famous swoosh logo…

*image from Short Form

**Update to Read to Lead post: here are the Read to Lead books since 2015:

  • Do the Kind Thing
  • How Google Works
  • The Upstarts: Uber, Airbnb, and the Battle for the New Silicon Valley
  • Leading Matters: Lessons from My Journey (John Hennessy)

39 thoughts on “Bucky the Bookkeeper Is Now Worth a Lot of Bucks…

  1. Sounds inspiring. I once made a ***** dollars by ****** and trying very hard. I’ll never forget the day when the rich and famous ***** shook my hand and told me, “***** you are going places. In fact, you can go to *****!” I encourage everyone to do what I did to be successful, and ***** as much as they possibly can.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I wanted to rip all the ***** to what’s behind it. But what a story. Although Nike is just too expensive and I also prefer clothes that doesn’t show the brand haha 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m curious about how much the logo added to Nike’s success. Things like that can help. Whoever selected Rhapsody in Blue as the United theme song was a genius. It is almost enough to make me fly United, and that takes a heck of a lot.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am sure the logo is worth hundreds of millions to Nike. I can’t recall Rhapsody in Blue and United – I’ll have to look for it on good old YouTube…


  4. I have certainly contributed to the Phil Knight fund over the years. I own quite a few t-shirts with the unmistakable swish.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For some reason, I just don’t have that many Nike pieces of clothes or footwear. My favorite kind of shirt is free, usually for volunteering or participating in a fundraising walk… 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Phil and Nike took branding to a whole other level with their iconic brand. I look forward to reading the book when I can. We sometimes forget the struggles of those who achieve great success. We, too often, think they were simply born to it. It is good to be reminded what hard work is often required to achieve our dreams. Another great post, Jim!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve never been fashionable, but my daughters both spent loads of money on clothes with the ‘right’ logos. I’ve never seen the appeal! I know how much the designer was paid, but wasn’t she given some Nike stock a few years later to compensate for her bad deal?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m not into designer clothes either. I don’t know about the Nike logo designer, but I believe the person who drew a mural at Facebook’s headquarters got some stock that turned out to be worth a couple hundred million…

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I actually just wrote about my favorite show brand and touched on Nike in the article.


    But anyway, it’s impossible to look at Nike’s history and not have Asics come up.


    A few months ago you posted about asking college students about stocks. Though I’ve never personally invested in Nike outside a free promo fractional share from Stash, I have heard a lot of people talk about how it’s a good stock. If you are a fan of buying stocks when they are on sale and feel confident about the company’s ability to bounce back, now might be the time to invest in them after this recent loss.


    Liked by 1 person

      1. Sanabul doesn’t do sneakers. They just do grappling and mixed martial arts gear. It’s quality stuff though. I’ve found with fitness gear it’s better to spend a little extra for something durable instead of getting the cheapest possible thing. But I also try to avoid the stuff that is like a Prada for fitness gear. The stuff that is expensive and still falls apart.

        Another great one I forgot, my RCA mp3 player. That thing has lasted probably 8 years now. Usually I would get a year tops out of one.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. My apologies for not picking up on that, since you had mentioned Asics and Nike, I just assumed that Sanabul sold sneakers as well. I agree it is nice to find stuff that lasts a long time. I’m still using my 2012 MacBook Air…

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Mmmmm not much to add to the comments…Apart from to say I always learn something from your posts, Jim and look forward to reading them every day…today is no exception 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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