Dan Bilzerian is arguably one of the most controversial figures on social media. Aka the Instagram King, Dan is an American professional poker player known for his incredibly carefree and lavish lifestyle. A trip to his Instagram page would reveal just the kind of person Dan is.
A relentless gambler and daredevil, Bilzerian can place his money on just about anything he wishes including a coin flip, and while he has lost millions in the process, he has gained some and earned a reputation for himself.
A moment which could be described as Dan’s breakthrough as an attention seeker was the nationally-televised 2013 World Series of Poker in Las Vegas where Dan got to sit at the front row with a model stroking his beard all the while. He had previously made an impression at a similar event in 2009 and caught the attention of ESPN.
At the 2013 event, Dan had placed his money on fast-rising poker player, Jay Farber who went on to win $5 million, minting Dan about $1 million in return.
He rolls with some high-profile celebrities including fellow braggadocio Floyd Mayweather and disc jockey Steve Aoki. Read on as we attempt to explore some facts about the man many American young men envy.
Dan Bilzerian Wiki
Dan Brandon Bilzerian was born on December 7, 1980, in Tampa Florida to corporate takeover specialist Paul Bilzerian and Terri Steffen. He has a younger brother Adam Bilzerian who also plays Poker. Dan and everyone in his family is said to have a very high intelligence quotient. He is of Armenian ethnicity from his father’s side and his family was lucky to be among the half that escaped death during the Armenian Genocide.
Dan has always been a rich kid. Born to a father who made tons of money as a corporate raider on Wall Street, Dan grew up in affluence. The Bilzerian’s family lived in an 11 bedroom mansion in Tampa Florid. Said to be about half the size of the Buckingham Palace, the house featured a swimming pool complete with a waterslide, an indoor basketball court, an imported volcanic rock mountain and a batting cage.
Despite having almost everything he wanted, Dan’s upbringing wasn’t all that a pleasant one, he has revealed, hugely because his dad Paul Bilzerian was barely in the picture due to his busy work schedule.
“Basically I didn’t get a ton of attention as a kid. I guess that’s why I’m such a flashy lunatic,” Dan once admitted.
When he was 10 years old, his father was arrested in his presence after he was found guilty of stock and tax fraud. More on that anon…
That arrest made Dan an object of ridicule in school which gradually turned him into a rebel. In one year, Dan was expelled from two schools. The only school that seemed accommodating for him was a military academy with drill instructors. His family later relocated to Utah where Dan was expelled from school after bringing his dad’s Vietnam war gun to show off to his classmates.
Confused about what to do next, Dan joined the Navy and began undergoing training to become a SEAL. However, like three-quarter of the trainees, Dan never made it to the end of the program. He was discharged honorably and placed on a $6,000 per month disability allowance which he used to enroll in the University of Florida where he studied business and criminology.
At college, Bilzerian began playing poker. While in college, Dan succumbed to pressure from the government to liquidate a third of his trust funds in order to get his dad out of prison. However, he went broke by his second year having just $750 left from liquidating his asset. Thanks to poker, Dan would turn that cash to $10,0000 and then to $187,000 in Las Vegas.
At some point, he was making as much as $90,000 per week from poker. Subsequently, Dan began to gain the attention of the high-stakes poker crowd. His first big tournament was the 2009 World Series of Poker Main Event held in Harveys Lake Tahoe. He finished at 180th place. Dan’s charisma couldn’t go unnoticed by broadcasters ESPN which helped to boost his popularity. The Armenian native has since built on that.
By 2010 Dan was by Bluff Magazine voted one of the funniest poker players. Dan soon moved up to “nosebleed stakes” hosting games at his LA mansion with a number of billionaires in attendance.
In addition to gambling, Dan has appeared in a number of films including Olympus Has Fallen (2013), Lone Survivor (2013), Cat Run 2 (2014) and more.
As a consequence of his abuse of drugs, Dan suffered two heart attacks before hitting his early thirties.
He declared his bid to enter into the 2016 presidential elections but later dropped out to endorse Donald Trump.
Dan Bilzerian Dad – Paul Bilzerian
Paul Bilzerian’s life as a young man sort of matched that of his son Dan. A juvenile delinquent, Paul dropped out of high school after being reprimanded for violating the school uniform by wearing jeans. However, after serving in the Vietnam war where he earned a Vietnamese Gallantry Cross, Bronze Star Medal, and Army Commendation Medal, he turned his life around.
Thanks to his high IQ, he graduated from Stanford in 1975 with a B.A degree with honours and then attended the Harvard Business School. He started out as a real estate investor and later began launching corporate takeover attempts. One of his early successes was the 1985 takeover of defense electronics manufacture, Singer Corporation. Soon he became a millionaire.
Dan’s dad Paul Bilzerian was enjoying affluence in Tampa’s tony Avila community until 1989 when he was convicted of stocks fraud. Most of his wrongdoings were related to the classic pump-and-dump operation which involved investing hugely in public companies, only to later launch hostile takeover attempts.
Known for his trademark bushy mustache turned white, Paul was originally sentenced to four years behind bars but served only 13 months with the rest done under house arrest.
Paul was again thrown in prison in 2000, however, he was released when his wife agreed to sell their Tampa mansion to bail him pout. Though the SEC won a $62 million judgment against him for illegal stock manipulation, Paul has repeatedly denied any wrongdoings.
His huge debts have forced him to file for bankruptcy a couple of times, however, many believe the bankruptcy to be a trick and that he has his wealth safely stashed away offshore..
As of 2014, it was reported that he had paid just $3.7 million of the total debt he owed investors. He is living in voluntary exile on the Caribbean island of St. Kitts.
Dan Bilzerian Net Worth
Though it is said that Dan has become a millionaire by playing poker, there are many who disagree and are of the opinion that Dan is benefiting from his father’s hidden wealth. Atypical of rich kids, Dan enjoyed trust fund benefits.
In his interview with radio host Howard Stern in 2014 Dan declared his net worth to be $100 million, with half of it stemming from his poker winnings in 2013.
The source of Dan’s wealth might always be a debatable topic, however, he has openly revealed how much he makes and losses from his crazy gambles. In 2011 he made $385,000 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway after winning Tom Goldstein. He owns an $800,000 Richard Mille timepiece. Rumor has it that he turned down $100,000 from a Facebook co-founder to shave his beards.
Dan lost $2.3 million to a coin flip gamble. He invested $1 million in the film Lone Ranger and made $1.5 million from the film’s success.
Dan Bilzerian House
The poker millionaire primarily lives in a gated community in Hollywood hills. The house features a pool with a view of the hillside, a sunken living room, cash counting machines, guns in almost every room and of course a poker table. He lives with his cat and two goats who sleep on a $700 blanket. He is rumored to be renting the house for $35,000 a month from Singapore’s multi-millionaire Wong Ngit Liong.
Bilzerian owns another house in San Diego and Las Vegas.
Dan Bilzerian Height: 5 feet 9.5 inches
Dan Bilzerian Girlfriend, Wife
Judging from the way he flaunts naked women on Instagram, it is obvious that no one woman can satisfy Bilzerian. He doesn’t seem like one who’d have the patience for a committed relationship. However, he was previously in a relationship with Playboy playmate Jessa Hinton. Jessa told reporters that she slapped Dan after she learned of his wild private card games involving prostitutes.
In a poker-game trip to Cannes, Dan reportedly slept with 16 women in 12 days. Hugh Hefner would be smiling at him from his grave.