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The truth behind the controversy: how banned TikTok star, Andrew Tate, really made his millions. And what you can learn from him?

If you haven’t heard of him, you’re either living under a rock or have no access to the internet, because Andrew Tate is EVERYWHERE. Or at least he has been everywhere until his recent removal from social media platforms.

Most people know him as one of the most controversial men on the internet, but he’s also a businessman, a successful one at that. 

I’m not here to pass judgement on Andrew Tate as an individual or comment on his internet personality – I really couldn’t give a toss about that. I’m here to explore how he made his way into the business world, how he’s grown his empire and most importantly, what we can learn from him. 

Who is he?

American-British Emory Andrew Tate lll was born in Chicago, Illinois before moving to Luton. His father was an international chess master who taught his son everything he knew. Aged 5, he was successfully competing in adult competitions before setting his sights on a slightly more aggressive hobby – kickboxing – where he won four prestigious titles. 

In 2009, Tate appeared in series seven of Big Brother. Whilst on the show, a pornographic video of him appeared on the internet which led to his controversial removal from the show.

That’s when he turned his hand to growing his business empire. 

Webcams 

Tate is often known for causing controversy, but one of his most criticised business ventures was, in fact, his first. After stumbling across a webcam ad on a website, Tate contacted several of his ‘girlfriends’ and encouraged them to quit their jobs and work for him and his brother. Two agreed and began working for him as cam girls at his home. In just a few years, he recruited upwards of 75 girls across four locations (homes he rented) and was pocketing 50% of the earnings. Following a supposed altercation with one of the women, he packed his bags, pocketed $30M in cash (apparently) and decided to concentrate on other avenues. Presently, it’s claimed he has little involvement in the company but still takes a generous 20- 30% cut of his former girlfriends’ incomes. 

Casinos 

Tate’s introduction to the Casino business came when he met a casino owner in Romania who owned a small chain of establishments across Europe. Following negotiations, it was agreed that Tate would set up his own branches (using his own money) under the company’s existing brand and would pay the owner a percentage of the turnover. To everyone’s surprise, it was a massive success. His USP,  offering free coffee to visitors to entice more business and deter them away from competitors. He currently owns 16 casinos across Europe and supposedly makes millions in profit each month. 

Hustlers University 

In 2021, Tate, launched Hustlers University, a monthly subscription platform offering unlimited access to different advice and tips on topics such as Crypto, Stocks & Trading, E-Commerce and many more. Priced at $50 per month, Tate claimed that at its peak Hustlers had over 120,000 members, raking in millions of dollars a month – but at the time of writing, the site was shut down following his ban from social media.  

In exchange for a commission, Tate encouraged his members to recruit other like-minded people who wanted to earn anywhere between “10K to 500K a month in their selected field”. It has since been branded a ‘pyramid scheme’ and ‘scam’, though reports suggest Tate has plans to launch Hustler’s University 3.0 following the financial success of the first. 

The War Room 

The War Room joins wealthy businessmen and those who strive to be, in discussions about money, finances and women. In other words, glorified networking (ish). This exclusive community connects male members via virtual rooms, to discuss various topics including finance, fitness, biohacking, news leaks and more and to help individuals learn, grow and succeed in specific fields. It’s safe to say we can draw similarities from Hustler’s University, but the stark difference is that The War Room charges a more meaty one-off fee of £4,147 which increases over time as it gains more members. 

Social Media 

Very early on, Tate made a name for himself for his extremely controversial comments, amassing millions of followers across Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and TikTok over the years. Whilst it’s unknown how much money he made from his social media accounts, he used his online ‘stardom’ to promote Hustlers University and The War Room, successfully recruiting more paying members. 

What can we learn from Andrew Tate?

In all areas of business, there are fans and critics. But in Tate’s situation, he has used any and all media attention, (good and bad), to promote his companies. 

Business is like chess

There are a lot of comparisons we can draw from chess in terms of how you run a business. From a very young age, Tate understood that you need to anticipate every move, consider all possible outcomes and pay attention to every piece on the board before taking your turn- the same applies to business. The more moves ahead you can think and the better you can anticipate your opponents’ moves, the more successful you will be. 

Only those closest to Tate will know whether his misogynistic and offensive remarks about women in particular are his ACTUAL beliefs. But what we do know is he utilised the media attention to promote and consequently expand some of his businesses- was it his plan all along? 

Being liked can help you on your way to the top and in many circumstances, it’s certainly beneficial. But what is more important than being liked is being KNOWN. Sometimes you need to think outside of the box to make your name and brand known, and that doesn’t necessarily mean you will be liked. 

You don’t need to reinvent the wheel 

Casinos have been around for hundreds of years, there’s nothing new there. But what can we take from Tate’s transition into the casino industry, and is there a lesson to be learnt? Tate opened a casino and offered visitors free coffee – nothing extravagant, right? Maybe not, but it did set his business apart from the competition. 

Tate’s success in the casino industry proves that not every business has to be the first of its kind. It doesn’t have to be a new, revolutionary concept. But it does need to have its own unique brand and selling point, otherwise, what can you possibly offer to a customer that they haven’t had, seen or experienced before? 

Vanilla doesn’t sell.

Tate is controversial. He’s hated by many. But one thing he’s certainly not is boring because boring doesn’t sell. A brand isn’t just a business, it’s the people behind it and in the case of Tate, his personal brand helped his companies, particularly The War Room and Hustler’s University, boom.

As noted earlier, Tate made his social debut on Big Brother and quickly developed a reputation for being a bit of a knob. He was kicked out, as we know, and received a lot of online hate. You’d think that would be the end of it, but guess what, it was just the beginning- he used his ‘fame’ to profit.

If you didn’t already know, I appeared on Channel 5’s, Rich House, Poor House, a few years back and had no qualms whatsoever about showing my real personality to viewers. Because whether or not people liked me, (obviously I hoped they would!), I knew it would help get my name out there more,  gain me more followers on social media and ultimately benefit my businesses and increase the opportunities available to me. Would I do something like that again? Absolutely. And should you ever get the opportunity, my advice is to jump at it!

The fact of the matter is, you don’t need to sprawl a load of misogynistic, violent comments to promote your brand, as much as it has benefited Tate. But you do need to stand for something, and that needs to come across in whatever way necessary because people don’t pay for vanilla, they just don’t.


Have multiple lines of revenue 

When you are reliant on one of anything you are at risk. And if that one thing you are relying on isn’t even under your control then you are even more at risk.

Seeing Tate getting kicked off social media platforms just makes me think of all the times I see people online complaining about being locked out of their Facebook account or having their Instagram account hacked. These people who generate all of their traffic from this one particular source all of a sudden have their business put in serious jeopardy.

If you generate all of your customers from Instagram and that network goes down, where does that leave you? Fucked! 

Whether it is social media, certain members of your sales team, a key member of staff, or a single finance provider – I am sure your business is over-reliant on one single source in too many areas.

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

In Tate’s case, his recent ban from social media is a financial blow, but he’s still profiting from his other businesses. Like me, he’s invested in and grown multiple companies to ensure that in the event of one failing, he’s still got money coming in from other sources.

In Summary

He may be a knob, but he is a successful one! And there are lots to be learned so that your business can thrive too. So whenever you see someone garnering a lot of online attention, don’t join the masses and get involved in trivial banter about them. Use it as an opportunity to study someone you can learn and benefit from, even if you may not like their personality.

Need some more no-bullshit advice and tips to help your business succeed? Get in touch via info@matt-haycox.com or follow me on social media! 

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