Law can be a pathway to middle-class or upper-middle-class respectability. But if you want real riches, like the kind enjoyed by Bob Fisher of Sagee Manor, consider the world of business. From the Times write-up:
[Fisher] graduated from the University of Virginia and Yale Law School, where his classmates included Bill Clinton. He practiced law in Atlanta but began investing in businesses along the way, including investments in the wireless spectrum for two-way radios, which was sold to a company that merged with Nextel, and in a company that owned 300 cellular towers in Atlanta and was sold to American Tower. Mr. Fisher said he and a partner sold both companies “substantially for stock.” Though he wouldn’t disclose how many shares each got, he did say, “We both did very well.”
Indeed. Well enough to retire while still in his 40s, pay $4 million for 50 acres on a North Carolina mountain, and build Sagee Mansion (for many millions more).
So why’s he selling now? Again, think one percent problems:
Mr. Fisher said he came out of retirement in 2009 to revive a family business, Wesley International, which makes a forkliftlike machine called the pallet mule. He thought this would be temporary, but it became a full-time job. At the same time, he said, his stock in Nextel and American Tower wasn’t worth what it had been in 1999. So in February of this year, he decided it was time to sell….
Mr. Fisher stressed to me that he didn’t need to sell Sagee Manor. He has a $2 million mortgage on it, which is small compared with the value of the estate, and the annual upkeep is $350,000, which he said he considered manageable. But he also owns two other homes, in Atlanta and Sea Island, Ga., where he lives, as well as the unsold log cabins. So he has a lot of real estate he isn’t using.
Let’s have a look around, shall we?