The Business Biography of Jean Paul Getty

October 17, 2019 524 views

Jean Paul Getty was one of the first billionaires in the world. He was President and general manager of George F. Getty Inc., an oil company that was passed on to him by his father. Later he re-established, owned, and directed the Getty Oil Company, increasing its portfolio to around 200 businesses.

Jean Paul Getty was also known for his bold decisions and philosophical views on wealth and life. He was an avid writer and learned how to deal with all kinds of people. His net worth amounted to around $3 billion.

Jean Paul Getty’s Success

Jean Paul Getty was the son of a millionaire lawyer who hugely ran a petroleum business. He studied at the University of Southern California, Berkeley, and Magdalen College, Oxford (finishing economics and political science). Every summer, he had a job in his father’s Oklahoma oil fields. In 1916, he then owned and operated his own company in Tulsa, buying and selling oil leases and making his first million at 24 years of age.

He took a break and became a playboy in Los Angeles. Three years later, he returned and increased his assets to $3 million. During the Great Depression, Getty bought Pacific Western Oil Corporation and Mission Corporation, which covers Tidewater Oil and Skelly Oil. He later fused these companies with Getty Oil.

In 1949, he invested $30 million on a large barren land in the Middle East but no oil was found in the area. However, four years later, the land struck oil, producing 16 million barrels annually and making him the wealthiest man in the world at that time. He lived in England after that and worked at his Tudor estate until his death in 1976.

The Jean Paul Getty Quick Bio:

Full Name: Jean Paul Getty

Birthdate: December 15, 1892

Birthplace: Minneapolis, Minnesota

Company: Getty Oil Company

Industry: Utilities and Energy

Key Success Traits: critical thinker, philosophical attitude, bold entrepreneur


Jean Paul Getty said that one billion dollars was not worth what it used to be.

He wrote the book, “How to Be Rich” and not “How to Get Rich” since he fostered a very philosophical attitude and approached matters differently compared to other businessmen.

He also wrote, “As I See It: The Autobiography of J. Paul Getty”.