Brian Acton Net WorthReal Name: Brian Acton
Date of Birth: 02/24/1972
Place of Birth: Michigan
2017 Net Worth: $3.9 Billion
Profession: Co-founder of WhatsApp
Brian Acton Biography
Brian Acton was born in Michigan in 1972 but grew up in Central Florida. He graduated from Lake Howell High School, and then attended Stanford University, where he graduated in 1994 with a degree in computer science. He began working for Rockwell International while he attended college, and then became a product tester for both Apple and Adobe Systems. In 1996, Acton was hired by Yahoo Inc., their 44th employee.
In 1998, Acton met co-worker Jan Koum and the two began both a work relationship and a close friendship as well. The pair worked at Yahoo for the next 9 years. Acton tried investing during the dotcom boom of the late 1990’s and lost millions of dollars when that bubble burst in the early 2000’s. In late 2007, this pair of friends decided to take a year off and travel around South America. In 2008, both Acton and Koum applied for work at Facebook but were rejected. Acton also applied at Twitter and was turned down for employment. Koum purchased an iPhone in early 2009 and realized that the brand new App Store was going to be a huge hit and would need thousands of new apps. Acton and Koum developed a text messaging app and decided that they would call it “WhatsApp” because it sounded so much like “what’s up.” In February of 2009, Whatsapp was incorporated in California. This app became a huge success, especially in other parts of the world where text messages can be expensive to text, espeically with friends in other countries. WhatsApp use is free and is used by an estimated 450 million people around the world.
Acton and Koum agreed in 2014 to sell WhatsApp to Facebook for $19 billion in both stocks and cash. Acton held an estimated 20 percent stake in WhatsApp, making his share worth approximately $3.8 billion. After the sale, Acton was sure to mention in his Twitter feed that he had been rejected by both Twitter and Facebook but managed to become a billionaire without them. With a net worth of $3.9 billion, Acton can really enjoy some sweet revenge.