Billionaire entrepreneurs under 40: Zuckerberg, Parker & Holmes
October 10, 2014
By Helen Knap
This weekend we are profiling billionaire entrepreneurs under the age of 40 - yes thats right, under 40! Take a look at our first three: Mark Zuckerberg, Founder of Facebook, Elizabeth Holmes, Founder of Theranos and Sean Parker, Co-Founder of Napster.
How did they do it and how much are they worth? where might they be going next! Take a look:
Mark Zuckerberg: Founder and CEO of Facebook: Worth: $34 Billion
Net worth is a cool $34 Billion and of course you know him as the founder and CEO of Facebook. He’s taken a pretty simple idea and turned it into a world movement – the social network. But, at age 30 he’s sure doing some growing up in the world of business with an eye to the future. In February he secured the purchase of mobile messaging business WhatsApp for $19 billion in cash and stock and has been on the acquisition trail all year.
In March it was announced that Facebook would be buying virtual reality headset maker Oculus VR. Some people say that Facebook faces a limited future and it is true the business has faced a lot of criticism for its handling of privacy and data issues but, it is hard to see the business model not evolving.
Who should Zuckerberg and the team look out for? That Chinese giant Alibaba. What can you learn from the story of Zuckerberg? Simple ideas are made more complicated when you believe it’s more than just a simple idea. Facebook was a simple idea.
Elizabeth Holmes, Founder and CEO of Theranos: Worth: $4.5 Billion
Elizabeth Holmes: at only 30 years old Elizabeth Holmes is worth a cool $4.5 Billion and she is now the youngest self-made women on the Forbes 400 list. After dropping out of school she decided to take the money she had saved for college and start-up a blooding testing company called Theranos in 2003. It was a pretty simple idea that enabled testing to be as seamless and painless as possible.
Essentially with a small prick of a pin (needle) Theranos can easily test a drop of blood at a fraction of the price of the larger commercial labs.
Having raised $400 million from venture capitalists the business is now valued at $9 billion with her percentage coming in at $4.5 Billion. Not bad for a college drop out with a very simple and practical idea. In fact, it would appear that anyone involved in the medical sector with a simple idea that can be delivered at low cost and with little pain will always be onto a winner
Sean Parker, Co-Founder of Napster: Worth: $3 Billion
At just 34 years old Sean Parker is worth a very nice $3 billion. The founder of Napster and the first founding President of Facebook, Parker has taken on a role as political activist and angel investor.
But, it all began with Napster back in when Parker joined with the Fannings based on a simple of idea of enabling peer to peer file sharing.
Eventually the business would be embroiled in legal disputes and challenges with the original service shut down by court order.
Having moved on from the early days of Napster Parker has combined investing with political activism with the founding of Brigade Media which uses technology to improve civic engagement. He is currently serving on Spotify’s board (after all he knows something about the online music and peer to peer sector) and is heavily involved in content around online media. The lessons to be learnt from Sean Parker are not necessarily in what he has already done it’s what he intends on doing. If you watch the investment trends of successful entrepreneurs you may very well draw the conclusion that you should be heading in the same direction!
About the Author: Helen Knap is social affairs reporter for EntreHub
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