2. Sean Parker

2. Sean Parker

Net Worth: $11.5 B

LAST YEAR: $16.9 B
CHANGE: -32%
AGE: 42
RESIDENCE: Holmby Hills
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Technology, investments

THE MONEY: Parker, who got his start in computer science as a hacker, founded Napster, a music file-sharing company, in 1999. In 2004, he joined Facebook’s founding company and owned 70 million shares of the company’s stock. His shares in Facebook were worth $2.6 billion when the company went public, in 2012, and increased steadily for years thereafter. But stock in Facebook, now Meta Platforms Inc., has been chopped in half over the last year, causing Parker’s net worth to plunge. In 2010, Parker snapped up three properties in New York worth a total of $58 million, according to Insider. Parker also invested $15 million in Spotify in 2010, taking 5% ownership of the company and serving on its board until 2017. He earned about $1.5 billion in 2018 by cashing out that position when Spotify went public. Parker owns a nine-bedroom Holmby Hills mansion, the Brody House, which he purchased in 2015 from Ellen DeGeneres, paying $55 million. Also in 2015, Parker used $600 million to launch the Parker Foundation, which focuses on life science, art, civic engagement and public health through such initiatives as the Parker Center for Allergy Research at Stanford University and the Malaria Elimination Initiative at the University of California at San Francisco’s global health group. The foundation formed the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy in 2016 with a $250 million grant.

THE BUZZ: In recent years, Parker has been active in the media and entertainment space. He joined the board of Weta Digital, a New Zealand-based visual effects company co-founded by director Peter Jackson, in September of 2019. The company announced plans in December to pivot its strategy from special effects production to content creation. In April 2020, Parker rebranded the Screening Room, a company he founded in 2016, as SR Labs, naming Man Jit Singh as its new chief executive and announcing a $27.5 million capital raise. SR Labs charges users $50 to watch movies at home that are still in theatres. Though the Parker Foundation has been quiet in the past three years, the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy has continued its studies of pancreatic, prostate and breast cancer. This year the institute awarded nine graduate and postdoctoral researchers from leading academic institutions a total of up to $4.5 million in fellowship and scholarship funds.

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