Top 16 world’s youngest billionaires:
#1 Perenna Kei & family, 24
Net Worth: $1.3 billion
The world’s youngest billionaire title goes to Perenna Kei, who owns an 85% stake in Logan Property Holdings through different companies and a family trust. Logan’s chairman and CEO, Ji Haipeng, is her father. Previously known by the name “Ji Peili,” Kei is a non-executive director at the company, and holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and finance from the University of London.
Dustin Moskovitz, 29
Net Worth: $6.8 billion
No longer the world’s youngest billionaire, Dustin Moskovitz will turn 30 this year. Mark Zuckerberg’s former roommate, Moskovitz helped kick start the social network from a Harvard dorm, dropping out of school after two years to work on the venture full-time as Facebook’s third employee. He left Facebook in 2008 to start Asana, a software company that aims to improve how people work with project collaboration tools. He got married in the past year to longtime girlfriend Cari Tuna.
Facebook turned 10 this year and no one was celebrating harder than CEO Mark Zuckerberg. After seeing his company past the growing pains of a disappointing May 2012 IPO, Zuckerberg has the Menlo Park, Calif.-based company flying high. Facebook’s shares are up more than 130% over the past year as of mid-February. That’s caused Zuck’s net worth to more than double over the same period, even after he gave away 18 million shares in late December. He sold more than 41 million shares and exercised 60 million options around that time as well.
Anton Kathrein, Jr. is the third generation to lead his family’s Kathrein-Werke AG–“the oldest and largest antenna manufacturer in the world,” according to the company’s website. A pioneer in automotive antennas, it also makes radio and TV broadcast antennas, satellite and terrestrial reception systems, equipment for high-speed multimedia transmission by cable TV operators and antenna systems and electronic components that allow cell phone signals to bounce across the world. The company–with 18 production sites worldwide, over 6,800 employees and $1.8 billion in revenue in 2012–was founded by Kathrein’s grandfather in 1919. Anton Sr. ran the company from 1972 until his unexpected death in 2012.
Dropbox cofounder and CEO Drew Houston is Silicon Valley’s newest boy-wonder billionaire. Barely out of his 20s, he joins the 10-figure fortune club this year after his San Francisco-based tech company raised a new round of funding in January at a valuation just under $10 billion. Houston (pronounced like the New York City street, not the Texas city) cofounded Dropbox, a cloud-based file-sharing service, with Arash Ferdowsi in 2007. Houston started tinkering with computers at age 5 and has been involved in startups since high school.
Although he first appeared on Forbes’ billionaire list as an 8-year-old, Albert von Thurn und Taxis, the 12th prince in his family line, officially inherited his fortune in 2001, on his 18th birthday. His assets include real estate, art and 36,000 hectares of woodland in Germany, one of the largest forest holdings in Europe. An eligible bachelor, he lives in the family castle in Bavaria, Schloss Emmeram, and drives race cars.
Scott Duncan is one of Texas’ most eligible bachelors and one of four heirs to a massive energy-pipeline fortune built by their late father, Dan Duncan. He is $1.2 billion richer than a year ago thanks to a rise in the stock price of Enterprise Products Partners and a generous dividend plan. His father, formerly the richest man in Houston, died in 2010 at age 77. At the time of his death, there was a one-year lapse on estate taxes, allowing the siblings to inherite the fortune tax-free. Had Duncan died at another time, their fortune would have been subject to a federal tax of at least 45%.
Facebook cofounder Eduardo Saverin, who was born in Brazil, has been living in Singapore since renouncing his United States citizenship in 2012. He rarely makes media appearances and now spends his time as an angel investor. “My life is not about creating another Facebook,” he said at a Wall Street Journal conference in Singapore last year.
# 9 Age: 32
Net Worth: $6.9 billion
China’s richest woman Yang Huiyan is vice chairman of real estate developer Country Garden. She was given her father’s stake in Country Garden before the company’s initial public offering in 2007, the same year that she topped Forbes’ list of China’s richest with a net worth of $16 billion.
Fahd Hariri is the youngest son of slain Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. He graduated from the Ecole Spéciale d’Architecture de Paris in 2004. While he reportedly hasn’t set foot in Beirut since his father’s assassination in 2005, he develops residential buildings there and credits his father for his love of real estate development.
Marie, 33, along with siblings Emmanuel, 43, and Jean-Michel, 46, inherited French dairy giant Lactalis, producers of popular Président brie among hundreds of other cheese, milk and yogurt brands. Between them, they own 100% of the company their grandfather founded in the 1930s.
#12: Sean Parker Age: 34
Net Worth: $2.4 billion
In June, Napster founder and former Facebook president Sean Parker wed singer Alexandra Lenas in a lavish ceremony in the forest in Big Sur, California with guests wearing outfits created by Hollywood costume designer Ngila Dickson. The $4.5 million wedding generated headlines for its Lord of the Rings-inspired outfits and Parker’s settlement with the California Coastal Commission for alleged environmental damage–Parker paid a $1 million fee on behalf of the Ventana Inn (owner of the venue) for lacking proper permits, and threw in an additional $1.5 million donation to the Coastal Commission. Parker insists not a single tree was harmed.
Net Worth: $1.65 billion
The Oetker fortune–of which Julia Oetker is the youngest of eight billionaire beneficiaries–was built on baking and pudding powder. Now broadly diversified, Dr August Oetker KG–a holding company whose subsidiaries employ some 26,000 people and generate around $15 billion in annual revenue–traces its roots 1891, when August Oetker, a pharmacist, started selling non-perishable baking powder. Today, each of his heirs and their families own 12.5% percent of Bielefeld-based Dr. August Oetker KG.
#14: Age: 35
Net Worth: $2.7 billion
Robert Pera returns to the list after a one-year hiatus thanks to stellar performance from his Ubiquiti Networks. He started out as a hardware engineer with Apple in 2003, but after just two years he left the company to start his own, later saying, “Apple is a great company, but I realized I wanted to have more success faster.”
Ayman Hariri is the son of slain Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. He’s involved in running Saudi Oger, one of Saudi Arabia’s biggest construction companies and the source of the Hariri family fortune. Oger was part of a venture that won a $653 million contract in January 2013 to build a local branch of the Jean Nouvel-designed Louvre museum in Abu Dhabi.
# 16: Age: 36
Net Worth: $2.2 billion
Naruatsu Baba joins the ranks of Forbes billionaires as his smartphone game maker Colopl storms the market. Baba, founded the company in 2008 as a developer; today he owns 59% of the growing company after selling of a 10% stake last summer.