Bono Plays Down $1B Facebook IPO Investment

If the Facebook IPO made Bono the richest musician in the world, he certainly isn't boasting about his achievement.

When a Washington Times reporter on Friday asked Bono what it was like to be "one of the wealthiest entertainers on the planet," the U2 frontman shrugged, "I don't think it's true," and kept walking.

In an interview with MSNBC, he played down his personal gain.

"Contrary to reports, I'm not a billionaire or going to be richer than any Beatle," he said on Friday.

Elevation Partners, the venture capital firm where Bono is a partner, bought roughly a 2.3 percent stake in Facebook for about $90 million three years ago, and the company's public offering - the stock began trading Friday - yielded some $1.4 billion in profit for Elevation.

Bono, Elevation Partners Set to Win Big From Facebook Sale

Determining Bono's wealth, though, is no easy task, in part because it's unclear how much of the Facebook money he'll pocket personally, since it's unknown how many partners he'll split it with. There's also no clear indication of what Bono was worth prior to the Facebook IPO, as published estimates range from $300 million-$900 million.

The wealth of Paul McCartney, who was presumed the richest musician prior to Bono's Facebook windfall, is also subject to interpretation, though the range of $750 million-$1.05 billion is a more manageable estimate than is Bono's.

Bottom line: When Bono gave the Washington Times reporter the bum's rush and claimed he wasn't sure about the myriad published reports that have suddenly listed him the wealthiest musician on the planet, he may have given the most accurate answer possible.