Ex-Police Officer Makes $12 Million in Three Years by Buying ATMs

By: Lauren | Published: Jan 08, 2024

Paul Alex decided to start a small side business in addition to his career as a police officer, but that side business would soon make him millions of dollars.

Now, Alex has retired from the force, has more than $12 million in the bank, and helps other people find success doing exactly what he did: buying ATMs.

The Drive for Success

Paul Alex has said that he always wanted to be the first millionaire in his family, but financial success, as most people know, is incredibly challenging, even with a great job.

Headshot of Paul Alex on Linkedi

Source: @realpaulalex/LinkedIn

Alex has explained that he worked hard as a police officer and quickly got promoted to detective, making over $200,000 a year, but it wasn’t nearly enough to become a millionaire.

Looking for That Work/Life Balance

He has also explained that working as a detective meant 60-100 hour work weeks; as Alex explained, “I didn’t have any personal freedom” (via Business Insider). He continued, “At the end of the day, I realized, this can’t be life.”

Screenshots from Paul Alex’s Instagram story explaining how he made his millions

Source: @savanhgdjjg601/Instagram

So he started saving, and in 2017, he heard of an interesting idea to invest in ATMs. At first, he thought this would be a great side hustle to supplement his income, but within just three years, his whole life had changed.

The ATM Business

After some research, Alex realized that ATMs cost less than $3,000, were considered low-risk, and could be profitable immediately.

Screenshots of Paul Alex’s YouTube video explaining how the ATM business works

Source: @ATMTogether/YouTube

He understood that a decent profit margin per ATM would be about $200 per month, so he invested in six ATMs and got to work finding the perfect locations for them.

ATMs Are Mobile

One of the best things, in Alex’s opinion, about ATMs is that they are mobile. So if one location doesn’t prove to be lucrative, they can be moved to another.

ATM in an empty nail salon

Source: ConnectATMs

When it came to the perfect location, it was a bit of trial-and-error for Alex. First, he tried two barbershops, a nail salon, and three liquor stores. But he soon realized that the liquor stores were making far more than the others.

Starting to Understand the Business

One of the best things Paul Alex did for his business was reach out for help; he found someone on Facebook who had great success in the ATM business and they informed him that convenience stores were the way to go.

ATM with a blurred-out screen/Generic-looking liquor store in Greenwich Village

Source: Reddit/Getty Images

Since he had success with liquor stores as well, he decided to move three of the machines to convenience stores, and keep three at the liquor stores. That month, he made $3,000 in profits.


Making Mistakes Along the Way

It’s important to understand that running an ATM business is like any other. It requires investment, loans, and, of course, mistakes.

Technician fixing at ATM machine

Source: Uriel Sinai/Getty Images

When Alex bought his first six ATMs, he paid $2,100 for each one with a 30% commission free from every charge. While he originally thought this was a great deal, his mentor taught him that he could buy them used and keep the entire commission for himself.


Finally Understanding the ATM Business

Once he had learned the ropes, everything started moving fast. Alex took out no-interest loans to keep the ATMs stocked with cash. He had technicians install and run the machines. By 2021, he left his job as a police officer.

Three ATM machines at the Clark Street subway station

Source: Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

Within no time, he had 30 ATMs and was making millions of dollars every year. And now, Alex has decided to share his knowledge with others.


ATM Together

Alex now has another business in addition to his ATMs; it’s called ATM Together, and it helps other people make their dreams of financial freedom a reality by investing in ATMs.

Dollar bills in denominations of twenty and five scattered on a flat surface.

Source: Pexels

So far, ATM Together has made Alex a whopping $3.5 million, on top of the $12 million he made in just three years through his own ATMs.


Giving Free Advice, Too

Alex also gives a lot of advice to people hoping to break into the ATM business on his social media platforms such as TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube.

Post from Paul Alex on Instagram with advice for buying an ATM

Source: @savanhgdjjg601/Instagram

Just as Alex made his millions through the help of online mentors, he hopes to be able to do the same for everyone who is inspired by his journey.


Paul Alex Is Now Promoting Bitcoin ATMs

While Paul Alex is certainly still in the cash ATM game, he has also recently started promoting the purchase of Bitcoin ATMs on his platforms.

A cryptocurrency ATM setup in a convenience store next to a standard ATM

Source: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

He believes they are even easier to set up and manage than cash ATMs. And since he has definitely proven himself to be an expert on this subject, many are taking his advice.


Paul’s Story Could Be Anyone's

Alex wants his students and everyone who hears his story to understand that anyone can do what he did and make their dreams come true.

Sheet of dollar bills

Source: Andy Jacobsohn/ AFP via Getty Images

He tells people, “Invest in yourself.” Self-educate, keep at it, and believe that you have what it takes. If you do, you could become the first millionaire in your family, too.