Zoom's Stock Surge Vaults Founder Into Ranks of World's Richest
(Bloomberg) -- Eric Yuan is a billionaire on the move.
The Zoom Video Communications Inc. founder has jumped into the ranks of the world’s richest people as shares of the company soared 180% since their market debut in April. That surge means Yuan joins the 500-member Bloomberg Billionaires Index, with a net worth of about $5.3 billion.
“We’re just getting started,” Yuan, 49, said in a phone interview. “And we’re going to keep working harder.”
Zoom is a rare breed: a recently listed U.S. tech company that actually makes money. Last week, the video conferencing firm reported a modest fiscal first-quarter profit and revenue that beat Wall Street estimates, results that Oppenheimer & Co. analyst Ittai Kidron described as a “slam dunk.”
Shares of Zoom closed Thursday at $100.95, giving the San Jose, California-based company a market value of $27.5 billion.
That’s “astronomical,” said Summit Insights Group analyst Jonathan Kees, who has a sell rating on the stock and a $45 price target. “Investors are being overzealous.”
Zoom counts Uber Technologies Inc. and Delta Air Lines Inc. as customers and vies with Microsoft Corp.’s Skype in the meeting-software sector.
Yuan joins Ken and Michael Xie, the brothers behind cybersecurity company Fortinet Inc., as Chinese immigrants who became Silicon Valley billionaires. He and his family sold shares worth $57 million at Zoom’s initial public offering on April 17, when his stake was valued at $1.9 billion, below the threshold for inclusion in the Bloomberg wealth index, which currently stands at about $4 billion.
He said he eventually plans to devote part of his wealth to philanthropy, citing education and homelessness as priorities, but for now he’s focused on growing the company he founded eight years ago.
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