Rich Techies

from Forbes Asap 4/2001 (so some may have dropped significantly since then...)

Bill Gates $54B, Larry Ellison $42B, Paul Allen $20B

Sanjiv Sidhu, i2, $6.8B; started in bedroom 12 years ago

Tom Siebel, Siebel Systems, $5.7B

Pierre Omidyar, 33, EBay, $4B

Jim Goodnight $4.6B, John Sall $2.3B (SAS)

Dave Duffield, People Soft, $2.3B

Jeff Bezos, Amazon, $2.2B

Dave Filo, Jerry Yang, Yahoo, $1.8B

Charles Wang, ComputerAssociates, $1.B

Steve Case, AOL, $0.9B

Pehong Chen, Broad Vision, $0.8B

Michael Saylor, 36, Micro Strategy, $0.7B

Judith Paul, Terence Paul, AdvantageLearningSystems (Educational Technology), $0.7B

Keith Krach, Ariba $0.7B

Scott Cook, Intuit $0.7B

Rob Glaser, 38, Real Networks, $0.6B

John Little, Portal Software, $0.5B

Michael Ferro, 34, Click Commerce (b2b), $0.4B

Dale Skeen/Jomei Chang, Vitria, $0.4B

DavidOros, AetherSystems (wireless software), $0.4B

Peng Ong, 36, InterWoven, $0.4B

Naveen Jain, InfoSpace, $0.4B

Monte Zweben, 37, Blue Martini (customer interaction), $0.3B

Strangely, the numbers above don't track very well with the online Forbes database.

lowering the bar

Do you really need wealth measured in the hundred-millions like the Forbes list? I don't (don't tell Jihi).

So you could include:

Martin Cagan (Silicon Valley Product Group) thinks of lots of these guys as Product Manager-s. Interestingly, none of these leaders went to business school, and several of them didn't even finish college. But they all had an intimate understanding of an underserved market, a passion for finding a better solution, and a deep knowledge of emerging technologies and how they might be applied to their respective problems... I don't believe that any of them would say they were "market-driven" in the sense that it is typically used today. They didn't go out and gather customer requirements which then told them what to build. But they did, in a very real and meaningful sense, spend time with and get to know the people that would become their customers.

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