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Martin Varsavsky ’84SIPA, ’85BUS, Google-backed entrepreneur, shares the No. 1 way to turn an idea into a billion-dollar company

An entrepreneur dreams of building a successful company. If everything goes right, perhaps even one worth millions.

Serial entrepreneur Martin Varsavsky has founded eight businesses, including two garnering valuations north of $1 billion. Many have been funded by big-name firms, such as Google Ventures, Microsoft and Sequoia Capital.

Varsavsky, who currently teaches entrepreneurship at Columbia University, credits a specific management practice for moving from one venture to the next. “I think that I would destroy my companies if I tried to do everything myself,” he tells CNBC Make It at New York’s Millennial 20/20 Summit. “I really think that delegating is crucial.”

That’s a skill the Argentine entrepreneur learned from his first venture in 1985, a New York real estate development company he founded with a personal investment of $25,000. The returns that he and his team earned positioned him to retire at 27.

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