September 12, 2011

Top 30 Richest Social Media Entrepreneurs

American elite top Wealth-X study, followed by Chinese

The social media boom has been greatly aided by the boom in smartphones, like the iPhones above.  (Photo: AP) The social media boom has been greatly aided by the boom in smartphones, like the iPhones above. (Photo: AP)

It comes as little surprise that social media entrepreneurs are riding high these days. The global industry is currently worth $215 billion, and the brains behind the likes of Facebook, Groupon, Baidu and LinkedIn are amassing Croesus-like personal fortunes, according to a study of the world’s 30 richest social media entrepreneurs released Thursday by Wealth-X.

More than half of the individuals on Wealth-X’s list live in the U.S., where valuations are soaring, public offerings make news and Google is playing catch-up with Google+.

Chinese social media tycoons are coming up fast, with nine people on the list. In the world’s largest Internet market, China’s social media sector will remain hot and its leaders will grow richer, according to Wealth-X. Absent competition from Facebook, which the Communist government banned supposedly for security concerns, firms like Tencent, Renren and Sina are gladly providing micro blogging, gaming and video sharing.

Following are the Wealth-X top 30 social media entrepreneurs.

mark zuckerberg of facebook1)   Mark Zuckerberg (left), co-founder and CEO, Facebook, U.S.

Net worth: $15.8 billion

2)   Larry Page, co-founder and CEO, Google, U.S.

Net worth: $15.7 billion

3)   Sergey Brin, co-founder and director of special projects, Google, U.S.

Net worth: $15.4 billion

4)   Robin Yanhong Li, co-founder, chairman and CEO, Baidu, China

Net worth: $9.5 billion

5)   Anil Ambani, chairman, Reliance Entertainment, India

Net worth: $6.9 billion

Eric Schmidt of Google is 6th richest6)    Eric Schmidt (left), executive chairman, Google, U.S.

Net worth: $6.6 billion

7)    Ma Huateng, cofounder, chairman and CEO, Tencent, China

Net worth: $5 billion

8)    Eric Lefkofsky (see next page), co-founder and executive chairman, Groupon, U.S.

Net worth: $4 billion

9)    Mark Pincus, founder and CEO, Zynga, U.S.

Net worth: $2.9 billion

10)  Yoshikazu Tanaka, founder and CEO, Gree, Japan

Net worth: $2.8 billion

Andrew Mason (left) & Eric Lefkovsky of Groupon11)  William Lei Ding, founder and CEO, Netease.com, China

Net worth: $2.6 billion

12)  Joseph Yizhou Chen, founder, chairman and CEO, Renren, China

Net worth: $1.9 billion

13)  Zhang Zhidong, co-founder and CTO, Tencent, China

Net worth: $1.7 billion

14)  Andrew Mason (above left), co-founder and CEO, Groupon, U.S.

Net worth: $1.6 billion

15)  Reid Hoffman (see last page), co-founder and executive chairman, LinkedIn, U.S.

Net worth: $1.5 billion

Twitter's Jack Dorsey with President Obama16)  Chen Tianquiao, founder, chairman and CEO, Shanda Interactive, China

Net worth: $805 million

17)  Kenji Kasahara, co-founder and CEO, Mixi, Japan

Net worth: $565 million

18)  Charles Zhang, founder, chairman and CEO, Sohu.com, China

Net worth: $550 million

19)  Jack Dorsey (above, with President Obama), co-founder and executive chairman, Twitter, U.S.

Net worth: $490 million

20)  Charles Guowei Chao, CEO, Sina, China

Net worth: $480 million

New Yorkers checking lunch deal on LivingSocial website.21)  James Jian Liu, COO, Renren, China

Net worth: $240 million

22)  Tim O’Shaughnessy, co-founder and CEO, LivingSocial, U.S.

Net worth: $180 million


23)  Eddie Frederick, co-founder and president, LivingSocial, U.S.

Net worth: $180 million

24)  Val Aleksenko, co-founder and CIO, LivingSocial, U.S.

Net worth: $135 million

25)  Aaron Batalion, co-founder and CTO, LivingSocial, U.S.

Net worth: $135 million

LinkedIn Founder Reid Hoffman (center), 15th richest, at IPO in May26)  Kaj Hed, chairman, Rovio, Finland

Net worth: $125 million

27)  Christopher DeWolfe, CEO, MindJolt, U.S.

Net worth: $120 million

28)  Dennis Crowley, co-founder and CEO, Foursquare, U.S.

Net worth: $60 million

29)  Naveen Selvadurai, co-founder and CTO, Foursquare, U.S.

Net worth: $55 million

30)  Steven Sordello, CFO, LinkedIn, U.S.

Net worth: $55 million

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