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Green bills unfolded and folded in is hands. Jertavious Dawe spoke under his breath each count of the money. The dollars in ones and fives mostly, turned over like water off of a mill. The circulative motion of the greenbacks enticed the young man of only eight years. His brother came into the house and saw Jertavious alone and almost in trancelike mode in his Newark, Delaware home.
“What are you doing with all that cash, youngster? Where’s mom and pop?” Twenty-two-year old Jermaine Dawe asked.
“I’m trying to be you. They’re both at work.”
“What’d you do this time? Did you craft and sell your another video game amongst your friends?”
“I'm trying to be you. You know that I’m good at coding. I made,” He finished counting the money. “Twelve hundred dollars in two weeks.”
“Guess how much that I make?”
Jertavious shook his head.
“One dollar a year.”
“One dollar?! How’re you able to afford all of those things you’ve bought?”
“I have a thing called stock options. Essentially, it allows me to forgo a traditional salary and still earn money while my company grows,” Dawe said.
“I’m trying to be you.”
“You say that but I don’t think that you should. You can follow my moves but you could never be me, younger brother. Your aim should be to continue on this little hustle of games amongst your classmates. In time, you’ll be able to forge your own firms. But it will be on your terms. Never mind what I’m doing, okay?”
“I just like that idea of how to make money in large amounts,” Jertavious said.
“And you will. The dollar salary is a signal to let your shareholders know that with a startup, you’re looking out for the best interests of the company. You’re main goal ought to be to not only develop cool products. That is important and very valuable. But the main purpose of business is to maximize profits. I get all kinds of compensation based on how well I do, what I invest in beyond my own company, and other ways of conducting business,” Dawe said.
Jertavious looked up at Dawe. “You know, I could be a billionaire like you one day. In fact, I intend on making more money than you, big bro.’”
“Forget about being me, look at your own life and what goals you can set while you’re still very young. I hope that you do make more money than me. That would drive me to excel at my own work. You’ve got a hustler’s spirit. That’s good. My app Narcolock to track narcotics shipments and make sure that they go to the right businesses and residences was built on that very soulful thing. Now, that’s a bit of a ways for you to concern yourself with, so I would say stick to the video games. It’s lucrative and age appropriate.”
Jertavious folded the wad of money into his pocket and leaned back into the chair. “So the dollar annual salary is to keep the shareholders from worrying about whether the business is going to go belly up?”
“It’s something like that. It’s better if I explain like this. You’ve already started your business. You’ve found investors who will take that money and put it towards the company, in your case, Ball Game Video Entertainment. You set up a way for you to receive payments through your performance, and stock options.”
“I still don’t get the stock options,” Jertavious asked.
“They’re essentially what you get to push you to do your best work possible.”
“Oh. We should set up Ball Game to be like that.”
“In a few years time, I can see you as the CEO of a multibillion dollar company. But it will be yours.”