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Why Atari Boss Rejected Offer To Buy Billion Dollar Apple Share

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Apple is now one of the biggest brands on the planet and has become a trillion-dollar company.

Millions of households around the world have Apple products, and the company continues to innovate since its formation in 1976.

It's well known the corporation had humble beginnings, originating in the garage of the legendary Steve Jobs.

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In the mid-1970s, Jobs was actually working for the tech company Atari.

Apple was being developed in the background, and Jobs approached Atari founder Nolan Bushnell for $50,000 to put into that project and take ownership of a third of the company.

But he turned it down, saying he had no interest in home computers.

He didn't know it at the time, but Mr. Bushnell had just turned down the opportunity to become super-rich.

"I've got a wonderful family, I've got a great wife, my life is wonderful"

You might think having discovered Apple's astonishing rise to success over the next few decades, Mr. Bushnell might wish he channeled more of Atari's resources into inventing time travel.

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But it appears he has no regrets.

Speaking to Australia's ABC News in 2015, he said: " "I could have owned a third of Apple Computer for $50,000."

"I've got a wonderful family, I've got a great wife, my life is wonderful.

"I'm not sure that if I had have been uber, uber, uber rich that I'd have had all of that."

While not as legendary as Steve Jobs, Mr. Bushnell has done very well for himself.

He's regarded as the godfather of video games.

After founding Atari, the company came up with the coin-operated model of arcade games.

Gamers of today might be wide-eyed when they see what people would spend hours playing in the 1970s.

It was called Pong, and based on tennis.

It featured two vertical bars, that could be moved up and down to bat a "ball" backwards and forwards - and that was it.

The game was a phenomenon and Bushnell came up with the idea of the "Pong Console", a revolutionary device that allowed players to play the game on their TVs.

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During the ABC interview, he explained: "We were able to get more and more transistors on a single chip and the wafers were very cheap to make and so all of a sudden things exploded."

The company sold hundreds of thousands of the consoles and is credited with the birth of home gaming.

Jobs joined the company as this was all going on.

"He was a difficult person"

Mr. Bushnell revealed: "He was a difficult person.

"Often he was the smartest person in the world and he would tell everybody that."

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Jobs and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak actually worked on the massively successful Breakout game for Atari, and Mr. Bushnell said the pair had a "strong friendship."

Jobs helped develop the hugely successful game Breakout for Atari with his colleague and fellow Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak.

Bushnell said despite Mr Jobs's quirk, the pair developed a strong friendship.

Bushnell, who also founded the Chuck E. Cheese pizza chain, is now 79 and is said to have a net worth of around $50 million.

Atari celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2021.

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