Forbes magazine has unveiled its annual list of über-rich Americans formally known as The Forbes 400. While the top ranks include familiar names like Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, the standout performer is Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg who this year added $4.9 billion to his estimated $6.9 billion fortune. The recent surge of wealth propels the 26-year-old to #35 on the list, placing him firmly ahead of Apple CEO Steve Jobs (#42). It's a surprising feat considering Jobs's age, 55, and his extraordinary success at Apple. How did Zuck pull ahead?
Here's the Difference Between Jobs and Zuckerberg, explains Sid Yadav at VentureBeat:
While Jobs founded and is undoubtedly the biggest influence at Apple today, it might come as a surprise to some that the 55 year-old CEO's financial interest in Apple is not the biggest contributor to his wealth.
In fact, the majority of Jobs' wealth ($4.4 billion) comes from Disney, where he became the company's largest shareholder after its acquisition of Pixar back in 2006. The remaining $1.3 billion is the stake in Apple he attained from its 1996 acquisition of NeXT and subsequent stock option grants from his tenure at the company.
The dichotomy between the two CEOs points to an interesting fact: where as Jobs was fired from his company back in 1985, Zuckerberg has done a commendable job of keeping in power, still controlling an unprecedented 25 percent of the company and the majority of board seats. The young CEO probably learned a thing or two from Jobs' mishap, and it seems to have paid off.
Forbes Explains "Recent private equity investments in Facebook valued the firm at around $23 billion-more than triple its 2009 value of $7 billion," writes Steven Bertoni at Forbes. "Illiquid private shares in secondary markets point to an even richer valuation." Cromwell Schubarth at the San Jose Business Journal reminds readers that the Forbes valuation "is based largely on speculation of what Facebook will be worth when it eventually goes public."
These Two Are Surprisingly Distant, writes Electronista: "Both CEOs have had only partial contact despite their new closeness in wealth. Apple allows Facebook contact sync but had troubled negotiations for Ping. Facebook in turn has one of the most popular apps on iOS devices but has mostly stayed away from being either a close partner or a competitor; it just today shot down rumors of a Facebook phone and said it would work with Apple in the limited form possible."
At Least Zuckerberg Is Donating to Charity, writes Dan Nosowitz at Fast Company: "Luckily, Mark Zuckerberg isn't merely sitting on his giant mountain of money, having a sliced money sandwich with money-mustard dressing on seven-currency bread and sipping on a moneyberry milkshake. The Wall Street Journal reports that Zuckerberg is set to announce a $100 million donation to the Newark, NJ public school system this week."
Way to Give to NJ Public Schools, Mark! praises Henry Blodget at Business Insider: "Yes, Mark's net worth was just estimated at $7 billion. But that's mostly private paper wealth. And the man is only 25 years old. (And he's not even from New Jersey). And, sure, the move is probably timed to counteract the repellant image of Mark in the fictional Facebook movie. But whatever. It's a huge gift, one he didn't have to make. Well done, Mark!"