The Top Shelf Liquor Wars

What do George Clooney, The Rock and Ryan Reynolds have in common? Besides being on your Mom’s hall pass list, they've all cracked the code to making billions in the booze biz.

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👇 Today’s Briefing

  • Insight: How “Skin in the Game” Changes Everything ⚠️

  • Story: Which A-Listers Are Battling for the Top Shelf? 🥂

  • Action: Fear-Setting - Two Sides of the Same Coin 🪙


How “Skin in the Game” Changes Everything ⚠️

“People have two brains, one when there is skin in the game, one when there is none.”

Having “skin in the game” can make mundane tasks more engaging and important, as the consequences directly affect the individual.

It’s all about risk and reward — there’s a big difference in putting a condom on a banana in health class (practice) and not catching the clap (real world), right?

The Risk:

  • Skin in the game means having a personal stake in the outcome of a decision and being exposed to potential losses if things go wrong.

  • You can make better decisions and are more trustworthy than those who don't because they have something to lose if they're wrong.

The Reward:

  • Asymmetry in risk and reward is a major source of instability. If you bear the costs, you should also reap the benefits (aka equity). 

  • No room for half-assed attempts. You're all in, balls to the wall, because you know that success is riding on your performance.

In essence, Skin in the Game argues that true responsibility, ethical behavior, and sound decision-making arise when individuals have a personal stake in the outcomes of their actions.

Here’s how A-list actors are putting “skin in the game” to make billions…


Which A-Listers Are Battling for the Top Shelf? 🥂

The 1980s was all about “The Cola Wars.” Today it’s the “Top Shelf Wars,” and it’s made up of today’s most well-known A-list celebrities.

These ain't your daddy's stuffy old whiskey makers – we're talking about the likes of George Clooney, The Rock, Ryan Reynolds, and Mark Wahlberg.

They're not just putting their pretty faces on bottles; they're getting their hands dirty and becoming part-owners of their own booze brands.

But there's a few problems standing in their way:

  • The liquor industry is more crowded than a Hollywood orgy

  • They’re better known for their acting chops than their distilling skills

  • Some folks think celebrity liquor brands are just a flash in the pan

Do they slap their names on any old rot-gut and call it a day? Do they listen to the naysayers who think they should stick to their day jobs?

Nope, these celebs are taking the liquor world by storm and refusing to be just another pretty face on a bottle. They're rolling up their sleeves, getting involved in the production process, and putting their money where their mouth is by becoming part-owners of their brands.

George Clooney, the silver fox who's responsible for more wet panties than a Chippendales show, co-founded Casamigos Tequila with two buddies. What started as a private label for their own consumption turned into a billion-dollar brand when Diageo bought it in 2017.

The Rock, not content with just being the most electrifying man in sports entertainment, launched Teremana Tequila in 2020. He's been promoting the hell out of it on his social media, and the brand's already making waves in the industry.

Ryan Reynolds, the man with the Twitter account sharper than a ginsu knife, acquired a stake in Aviation American Gin in 2018. His hilarious promotional content has helped the brand soar to new heights.

What do they all have in common? They've got more skin in the game than a nudist at a strip poker tournament. These celebs are ensuring that their brands are more than just a vanity project. They're invested in the success and quality of their products, and they're using their star power to shine a spotlight on the industry.

The "Top Shelf Wars" are just getting started, and these celebrity-owned brands are ready to rumble.

Mark Wahlberg, not to be outdone, bought into Flecha Azul Tequila. Wahlberg sums up the celebrity partnership as follows: “I just cut a big check and said, ‘Let me do my thing and promote you guys and your brand.’ That’s literally the extent of it,” says Marky Mark.

This is also the tip of the iceberg as more and more celebrities are getting in on the action, such as Conor McGregor (Proper No. Twelve), Jay-Z (D'Ussé Cognac), Justin Timberlake (Sauza 901), Bob Dylan (Heaven’s Door), Snoop Dogg (Indoggo Gin), Matthew McConaughey (Wild Turkey), and Bryan Cranston (Dos Hombres)

Key takeaway: With a little grit, determination, and a whole lot of skin in the game, you can make your mark in any industry.


Two Sides of the Same Coin 🪙

When you're ready to put skin in the game, you better be prepared for both the mind-blowing rewards and the ball-busting challenges. Before you go sticking your dick in the proverbial glory hole of opportunity, imagine both scenarios:

Imagine Apocalyptic Failure:

  • What's the absolute worst-case scenario if you put your hard-earned cash, your reputation, and your fucking dignity into this deal?

  • Could you end up broke, homeless, and giving handjobs behind a dumpster just to score your next meal? Really visualize the gory details, no matter how much it makes your sphincter clench.

Imagine Unfathomable Success:

  • Now, let's flip the script and consider the best-case scenario. What if this deal makes you rich as f**k?

  • Could you be swimming in so much cash that you could wipe your ass with hundred-dollar bills and still have enough left over to buy a private island populated entirely by horny supermodels?

At the end of the day, the decision is yours. Just make sure you're ready to handle the outcome, whether it's an earth-shattering orgasm of success or a walk of shame to the bankruptcy court.

Meme of the Week 🤣 

Bite-Sized Reads 📚

[Past Issue]: “For Oprah, owning the rights to her show was like having a license to print money…”

[Read]: Nassim Nicholas Taleb: “What matters isn’t what a person has or doesn’t have; it is what he or she is afraid of losing.”

[Read] “Match made in hell is one of the most popular marketing copies of 2020 that Ryan Reynolds’ production company…”

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Publisher: Jordan Belfort

Editors in Chief: Brock Swinson and Davis Richardson

DISCLAIMER: None of this is financial advice. This newsletter is strictly for educational purposes and is not investment advice or a solicitation to buy or sell any assets or to make any financial decisions. Please be careful and do your own research. 

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