Ronald Wayne Never Regretted His Decision To Leave Company

Illustration of a vintage computer motherboard from the 1970s.Apple is currently valued at $3.01 trillion, making it one of the most valuable companies in the world.

Ronald Wayne, who was one of the founders of Apple (along with Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak), held 10% of the company's shares when it was incorporated in the mid 1970s.

Wayne, after just a few days with the company, decided to leave.

Wayne would sell his shares in Apple back to Jobs and Wozniak for $800.

If he had held, these same shares would currently be worth $300 billion.

Wayne, however, doesn't regret his move.

What happened?


Ronald Wayne was hired to be the "adult" at Apple.

While his official job was overseeing mechanical engineering, he was also expected to be the adult in the room.

After all, Jobs and Wozniak were both in their 20s, while Wayne was 40 years old.

Wayne drew up a contract, the three men signed it and Apple was born.


After just a few days, Wayne announced to Jobs and Wozniak that he was out.

The three men agreed on a $800 payout for Wayne's shares, and Jobs and Wozniak were left to run the company by themselves.

Wayne says that he bailed so quickly due to his worry over the loans that Apple was taking.

In order to fulfill one of their first contracts, Steve Jobs took out a $15,000 loan in order to buy parts for a big order.

The company that was placing the order, The Byte Shop, was allegedly known for not paying their bills, and Wayne was worried that the bank would come for him if Apple couldn't pay back the loan.

After all, Jobs and Wozniak were in their 20s and had no assets to speak of.

If Apple couldn't repay the loan, Wayne was worried that the bank would come after his house.

So, Ronald Wayne sold his shares and was gone.


You'd think that Wayne would regret selling his 10% of Apple, giving that the company is so valuable.

He says that this isn't the case, and that he would have been the "richest man in the graveyard" if he had stayed with the company.

Apple had some very close calls in its earliest days, where it almost went out of business.

According to Wayne, these close calls would have been the end of him, and the stress would have finished him off.


Wayne does have one regret, however, and that's selling his original contract with Apple for just $500.

The contract reportedly sold at an auction in 2011 for $1.59 million, and is likely worth much, much more now.

Filed under: General Knowledge

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