Brian Acton (born 1972) is an American computer programmer and Internet entrepreneur. He is the co-founder (with Jan Koum) of WhatsApp,a mobile messaging application which was acquired by Facebook Inc.
Life History of Brian Acton
The road to success is paved with hard work, sacrifice and determination. Brian Acton’s hard work paid him off big time with a simple idea called Whatsapp. Born in the year 1972, Acton is more popular as the Co founder of WhatsApp. His life was not very simple. The man who was once rejected by Facebook as an employee sold WhatsApp to Zuckerberg recently and also holds stakes in the company.
According to Acton, “Life is all about adventures and achieving success or nothing”. This adventure helped him create a mobile message giant which is now being used by more than 450 million people.
Brian spent his childhood in Michigan. His mother ran a freight shipping firm. She was the one who advised Acton to start his own business. He was a computer science graduate from Stanford University. Earlier he also studied in University Of Central Florida and University of Pennsylvania.
Brian Acton started his career from the scratch in the year 1992. He first worked with Rockwell International as a system administrator. He later woentt on to work as a test engineer with companies like Adobe systems and Apple.
In the year 1996, Brian Acton was hired by Yahoo Inc. He was the 44th employee of Yahoo. In the year 1998, Jan Koum was hired by Yahoo Inc. who later became the co-founder of WhatsApp along with Brian Acton. The two worked together for many years.
While working with Yahoo Inc, Acton invested in dot com bubble in the year 2000 and lost millions. In 2007, both he and Jan Koum decided to leave Yahoo Inc. They started travelling South America for almost one year.
Acton was not a stranger to failure but his hard work speaks a lot about the value of vision and tenacity. Both Acton and Koum applied for a job at Facebook but were rejected. In the year 2009, Jan Koum visited one of his friends Alex Fishman and planned on developing an app. A week later on his birthday, WhatsApp was incorporated in California. He chose the name WhatsApp because it sounded similar to daily phrase, “What’s up”. That is when Brian Acton and Jan Koum founded WhatsApp.
In the year 2014, the duo agreed to sell off WhatsApp to Facebook for $19 billion in stock and cash. According to Forbes, Brian Acton holds a stake of 20 percent in the company. He fondly tweeted on his personal Twitter account that he was a once reject by both Facebook and Twitter in the year 2009.
Brian Acton now has a net worth of $3.4 billion. He is ranked 161 among the Fortune 400 people by Forbes and 551st billionaire in the world. He is ranked as the 190th wealthiest man in the United States of America.
Brian Acton in World's Billionaires
Facebook turned down Brian Acton when he applied for a job in 2009 but in August 2014 it paid the computer engineer more than $3 billion in stock and cash as part of its $19 billion acquisition of WhatsApp, the messaging startup he cofounded with fellow billionaire Jan Koum. Acton's mother ran a freight-shipping firm and gave him early insight into running a business and meeting payroll. After Acton and Koum left Yahoo in 2007, Acton became WhatsApp's first investor; Koum invited him to be his cofounder in late 2009. WhatsApp is now the biggest mobile messaging service in the world with 700 million active users, the vast majority of whom are outside the U.S.
2007 – Yahoo Super Star