Millennials tend to get a bad reputation from older generations as entitled, self-centered, and periodically lazy. Not all millennials fit those categorizations, however. In fact, 3.2% of the ultra-wealthy global population falls within the millennial age range — not bad considering their relatively young age and the time it takes to accumulate such great wealth. The 30 millennials listed here did not inherit a business from their families — they are all self-made entrepreneurs.
Mark Zuckerberg is the quintessential example of a now wealthy millennial who hit the ground running from an early age and ended up scoring big. Creating Facebook in the comfort of his dorm room at the age of 19, Zuckerberg is now worth some $74 billion — he is not only the richest millennial, but also the fifth richest person in the world. Several other booming businesses such as Airbnb, Instagram, and Snap Inc. were created by millennials who are now world-renowned billionaires.
To identify the richest millennial entrepreneurs in the world, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed a slew of credible sources, most notably Forbes, Bloomberg, and Wealth-X, to find people with the greatest to-date net worth. We used Pew Research Center’s definition of a millennial — those born between 1981 and 1997. Those above the age of 36 years old were not considered.
Of the 30 richest millennials, 25 are American. The outliers include Irish brothers John and Patrick Collison, who created Stripe, a company that enables businesses and individuals to easily accept payments over the internet. Also among the non-American group is Kirill Shamalov of Russia, Liu Ruopeng of China, and Eduardo Saverin, formerly of Brazil and currently of Singapore.
Of the 30 richest millennials, 18 are billionaires. Among the billionaires, there were several from the same company, which is indicative of how successful the companies these young entrepreneurs founded truly are. For example, the top three millennial billionaires gained most of their wealth from Facebook. The next three got rich from Airbnb, two from Snap Inc., two from Stripe, and two from Pinterest.
To identify the richest millennial entrepreneurs in the world, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed a wealth of sources, including news sites Forbes, Bloomberg, and Wealth-X — a site that provides intelligence and market research on both ultra high net worth and high net worth individuals — to find those with the highest to-date net worth. We used each individual’s real-time net worth as of January, 4 2018, if available from that person’s profile on Forbes. If real-time net worth was not listed, we included his or her most recent net worth. We excluded those born before 1981 to correspond with Pew Research Center’s classification of a millennial. Those who inherited their wealth and business from their parent(s) or grandparent(s) were not considered. The age of each entrepreneur is calculated as of January, 4 2018.