Michael Milken is best known for developing high-yield bonds, also known as "junk bonds." Milken realized that investors would make high profits by taking high risks and lending to companies with lower credit scores than only lending to companies with outstanding credit scores. Milken also applied the principle of supply and demand, realizing that there was a shortage in supply of high-risk bonds. During his career at Drexel Burnham Lambert, Milken and led his colleagues on a project to increase the supply of high-yield bonds. High-yield bonds allow companies with less than desirable credit scores to receive capital to grow. High-yield bonds have been responsible for the development and growth of several huge industries such as cable television and wireless communication.
Milken also entered the education industry by founding KinderCare Education with his brother in 1996. KinderCare Education has more than 500 childcare and learning centers nationwide, offering daycare, before- and after-school programs, and summer programs to children ages 6 weeks to 12 years old. KinderCare Education also owns LeapFrog Enterprises.
Today, Milken works as a philanthropist through the Milken Institute and Milken Family Foundation. His philanthropic efforts support education through the Milken Scholars Program, public health, and medical research with an emphasis on cancer research. Milken was previously diagnosed with prostate cancer and is now in remission. As a result, Milken founded the Prostate Cancer Foundation, which donates millions annually toward research for a cure.