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Robert F. Smith

Robert F. Smith Net Worth

2021 Net Worth:$5 Billion

Net Worth:$5 Billion
Full NameRobert Frederick Smith
Birthday:December 1, 1962
Country of Origin:United States of America
Source of Wealth: Businessman, Entrepreneur

Robert F. Smith Net Worth

Robert F. Smith is an American businessman, philanthropist, chemical engineer, and investor who has a net worth of $5 billion. He is the founder, chairman, and CEO of the investment firm Vista Equity Partners. Forbes has named Smith on several business lists, including its list of the 100 greatest living business minds, and the wealthiest people in America. 

He is the first black man to sign the Giving Pledge and has already moved quickly to give away large portions of his net worth. In 2019, Smith pledged to eliminate $34 million of student loan debt for the Morehouse College graduating class that year. For the pledge, he was named “Executive of the Year” at the 2019 PitchBook Private Equity Awards, which recognize individuals in the private equity industry who have made significant donations. He was also recognized as one of the 50 people “who defined 2019” on The Bloomberg 50 List. Smith is included in Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2020.

Smith worked at Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company, Air Products & Chemicals and later at Kraft General Foods as a chemical engineer,where he registered two United States and two European patents. From 1994 to 2000, he worked for Goldman Sachs in technology investment banking, first in New York City and then in Silicon Valley. He advised on mergers and acquisition activity with companies such as Apple and Microsoft. In 2018, Smith was included in Vanity Fair’s New Establishment List, which is an annual ranking of individuals who have made impactful business innovations.

In 2000, Smith founded Vista Equity Partners, a private equity and venture capital firm of which he is the principal founder, chairman, and chief executive. As of 2019, Vista Equity Partners was the fourth largest enterprise software company after Microsoft, Oracle, and SAP, including all their holdings. Vista has invested in companies such as STATS, Ping Identity, and Jio.  As of 2019, Vista Equity Partners had closed more than $46 billion of funding.

In 2016, Smith was named as Private Equity International’s Game Changer of the Year for his work with Vista.

The 2019 PitchBook Private Equity Awards named Vista Equity Partners ‘Dealmaker of the Year

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Entrepreneurs

Shelby Bryan

Shelby Bryan Net Worth

2021 Net Worth:$200 Million

Net Worth:$200 Million
Full NameJohn Shelby Bryan
Birthday:March 21, 1946
Country of Origin:United States of America
Source of Wealth:Business Executive, Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist

Shelby Bryan Net Worth

Shelby Bryan is an American telecommunications pioneer, business executive, futurist, entrepreneur, and venture capitalist who has a net worth of $200 million. In the business world, he is best known for being the founder of Millicom International Cellular S.A. He is probably best known for being married to fashion editor Anna Wintour from 2004 until 2020. They began dating in 1999.

Bryan was born in Houston, Texas and attended Mirabeau B. Lamar High School in Houston where he excelled in football and boxing. At the age of 16 he became one of the youngest Golden Gloves contenders. Bryan received from the University of Texas a BA in 1968 and a law degree, graduating Phi Delta Phi in 1970. He was one of two law graduates in the United States chosen to work in Washington, DC for Ralph Nader, focusing on the passage of the Clean Water Act. In 1973, Bryan received an MBA from Harvard Business School.

In 1973, Bryan joined Morgan Stanley in the mergers and acquisitions department. He left in 1977 and moved to Houston to form an oil and gas company, Austin Resources Corporation, and a bank holding company, with Ned Holmes, which became Prosperity Bank, one of the largest Texas-based banks.

In 1980, Bryan moved back to New York to partner with Jan Stenbeck and set up a company, Millicom, to operate voice and data distribution which became cellular telephony. Bryan served as president of Millicom from 1981-1994. Millicom received one of the first three US cellular developmental licenses in 1981. In addition to operations in the United States, Millicom went on to form cellular joint ventures in over 20 countries throughout the world including Mexico, Hong Kong, the Soviet Union, the Philippines, and Pakistan. One of the companies, Vodafone, was formed in partnership with the British company, Racal Electronics. The company, currently at a market capitalization in excess of $200 billion, is the second-largest cellular company in the world.

In 1981, Millicom formed a company, Microtel Communications, in partnership with British Aerospace and Pacific Telesis which was awarded by the British government a personal communications network “PCN” which competed with Vodafone. The service branded as Orange was later acquired by France Telecom which subsequently changed its name to Orange.

In 1994, Bryan was asked to step in to replace the CEO of ICG Communications, which was in the midst of financial failure. Brought in by ICG’s board of directors as a change agent, Bryan turned the failing company around by immediately replacing the management team with more experienced, higher caliber professionals and implementing a new business plan. He successfully raised more than $2 billion in the financing, and from 1996–1999 revenues were raised 10 times from approximately $50 million to $500 million. By the end of 1999 ICG was carrying approximately 15% of the world’s internet traffic. That historical improvement in revenues enabled the company to grow from 125 to more than 3,500 employees. At the time, ICG was one of the first telecom companies aggressively deploying fiber in metropolitan areas.

Bryan saw the warning signs of the looming dot-com bust: an overbuilt, unpredictable industry that was over-funded. When he shared his concerns with the company’s stakeholders, his prediction was very unpopular. Bryan stepped down from his role at ICG in 2000 when the company, like most of those in the Internet business, began to face difficult times during the dot-com meltdown.

Following his departure from ICG, Bryan went on to form Pingtone Communications, one of the first VOIP (Voice over IP) companies in the United States. BusinessWeek currently lists Bryan as chairman and chief executive officer of the Washington, D.C.-based company.

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Entrepreneurs

James Simons

James Simons Net Worth

2021 Net Worth:$24 Billion

Net Worth:$24 Billion
Full NameJames Harris Simons
Birthday:25 April 1938
Country of Origin:United States of America
Source of Wealth:Mathematician, Physicist, Businessperson

James Simons Net Worth

James Simons is an American mathematician, billionaire hedge fund manager, and philanthropist with a net worth of $24 billion dollars. He is the founder of Renaissance Technologies, a hedge fund based in Setauket-East Setauket, New York. He and his fund are known to be quantitative investors, using mathematical models and algorithms to make investment gains from market inefficiencies.

Due to the long-term aggregate investment returns of Renaissance and its Medallion Fund, Simons is described as the “greatest investor on Wall Street”. As reported by Forbes, his net worth is estimated to be $23.5 billion, making him among the richest people in the United States.

Outside of finance, Simons is known for his studies on pattern recognition. He developed the Chern–Simons form (with Shiing-Shen Chern), and contributed to the development of string theory by providing a theoretical framework to combine geometry and topology with quantum field theory. In 1994, Simons founded the Simons Foundation with his wife to support researches in mathematics and fundamental sciences.

He is one of the biggest donors to the University of California, Berkeley, establishing the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing in 2012, and to Berkeley’s Mathematical Sciences Research Institute, where he serves as a member of the Board of Trustees.

In 2016, asteroid 6618 Jimsimons, discovered by Clyde Tombaugh in 1936, was named after Simons by the International Astronomical Union in honor of his contributions to mathematics and philanthropy.

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Entrepreneurs

Bill Ackman

Bill Ackman Net Worth

2021 Net Worth:$2.3 Billion

Net Worth:$2.3 Billion
Full NameWilliam Albert Ackman
Birthday: May 11, 1966
Country of Origin:United States of America
Source of Wealth:Businessperson, Investor, Film Producer

Bill Ackman Net Worth

Bill Ackman is an American hedge fund manager and philanthropist who has a net worth of $2.3 billion. Also known as William Ackman, he is best known as the founder and CEO of Pershing Square Capital Management LP (a hedge fund management company).

Ackman was raised in Chappaqua, New York, the son of Ronnie I. (née Posner) and Lawrence David Ackman, the chairman of a New York real estate financing firm, Ackman-Ziff Real Estate Group. He is Ashkenazi Jewish. In 1988, he received a bachelor of arts degree magna cum laude in the Committee on Degrees in Social Studies from Harvard College. In 1992, he received an MBA from Harvard Business School.

In 1992, Bill Ackman founded the investment firm Gotham Partners, along with a fellow Harvard graduate. Gotham made small investments in public companies. In 2004, Ackman started Pershing Square Capital Management. In 2005, Pershing bought a significant share in the fast food chain, Wendy’s, and successfully pressured Wendy’s to sell its Tim Hortons doughnut chain. Wendy’s spun off Tim Hortons through an IPO in 2006 and raised $670 million for Wendy’s investors.

After Ackman sold his shares at a substantial profit, the stock price collapsed, raising criticism that the sale of Wendy’s fastest-growing unit left the company in a weaker market position. Ackman blamed the poor performance on their new CEO. Ackman’s funds went on to own stakes in Target Corporation, Borders Group and others. Ackman’s notorious battle with the MBIA (Municipal Bond Insurance Association), which began in 1992, was documented in a book written by Bloomberg News reporter Christine Richard called Confidence Game.

More recently BillAckman has earned headlines for his criticism of Herbalife. Ackman’s stance is that Herbalife is a pyramid scheme.

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