If you’ve purchased stock in Jet.com, you may want to give your numbers a second look — you might find yourself pleasantly surprised. York, Pennsylvania resident Eric Martin certainly was. Recently, Jet.com was purchased by WalMart for an estimated $3.3 billion and that acquisition drove the company’s stock up significantly. Martin took a chance on a Jet.com contest that won him 100,000 options in the company. Those shares are now worth an estimated $10-20 million. It’s on that special ‘going from homeless to a Marvel Superhero’ level of impressive, with hopefully none of the lottery curse downsides.
The craziest part? Martin only had to spend $18,000 to secure those shares. Last year he entered a contest to encourage referrals to Jet.com’s membership-based program. For those of you who aren’t aware, Jet.com functions like a sort of Costco for the online crowd. It’s a “We Sell Everything” kind of website that ensures prices being 10-15% lower than anywhere else with memberships that cost $50 annually. Rather than just sticking to referring friends and family to the site, Martin shelled out $18,000 for Facebook ads. His referrals skyrocketed, and soon he found himself at the top of the contest.
When asked what he’d do with his newfound wealth, he didn’t even seem to know, aside from claiming that he was going to buy some snow crab legs to celebrate (we’d personally suggest a Scrooge McDuck-style money bath, but we understand if that’s a bit ostentatious for some). All in all, it sounds like this couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. There’s something cool about a smart guy seeing an opportunity and taking a risk for it. Luckily for Eric, it worked out more than well for him.