Snapchat’s Bobby Murphy just got richer after company IPOBy Cristina DC Pastor
Bobby Murphy’s net worth climbed to almost $5 billion, cementing a title Forbes has bestowed on the Filipino American tech entrepreneur as one of the youngest billionaires in the world.
Murphy, 28, has a net worth of $4.9 billion as chief technology officer of Snap, Inc., a social media company that founded the enormously popular message-sharing app called Snapchat. Following a successful IPO of Snap on March 2, Murphy’s and co-founder Evan Spiegel’s individual net worth of $4 billion climbed 40 percent to $5.6 billion on opening day. That number may well fluctuate depending on the way the stock performs. Forbes is listing Murphy’s real-time net worth as $4.9 billion days after the stock weakened.
Snapchat user Elton Lugay, the U.S. correspondent for the Inquirer, uses the app although sparingly, “only when I’m bored.” He loves playing around with the filters “for fun.”
He is one among an estimated 150 million Snapchat users that include celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Rihanna. Its popularity stems from a specialty function where messages and video disappear after they’ve been sent out. Because of this feature used by unabashed texters to send nude photos, Snapchat came to be known as a “sexting app,” a reference the founders dismiss because the images are capable of being screen-grabbed.
Murphy — born Robert Cornelius Murphy – has been described as smart, friendly, and quiet “like a monk,” according to the Business Insider.
His father, Richard Cornelius, is said to be an employee of the State of California, and his mother, Rosie Go, is of Filipino-Chinese ethnicity. He was privately educated in Catholic schools. Saint Mary’s College High School in Berkeley announced with pride that its 2006 alumnus Bobby Murphy was named one of Time Magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential People of 2014.
CEO Evan Spiegel may be the public face of Snap, but its chief technology officer Bobby Murphy also wields “considerable power,” according to the Business Insider.
“Murphy leads Snap’s engineering and research teams. Sources say he’s also involved with a top-secret team called Snap Labs that works on projects like the recently announced Spectacles glasses,” says the report.
Co-founders and co-creators Evan Spiegel and Murphy were in the same Kappa Sigma fraternity at Stanford University. In 2011, they launched Snapchat. Two years later, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg offered to buy Snapchat for $3 billion, but was turned down. Today, Facebook’s Instagram app has some of the same functionality as Snapchat.
Appearing with Spiegel on Stephen Colbert’s show in 2013, Murphy explained Snapshot’s ‘disappearing images’ as one of its appealing features.
“The disappearing aspect is a way to bring the service back to normal human communication which is ephemeral and transient. It allows you to do that with people outside of the room or across the world,” he said. “The photos disappear in an effort to keep the communication very natural and human.”
Murphy agreed with Colbert who observed that among today’s college kids, starting an app is what used to be starting a band. “I think it is,” he said.
On Murphy’s 24th birthday, Snap tweeted, greeting happy birthday to our “resident dark hacking wizard.” Batman aka ‘The Dark Knight’ is Murphy’s favorite superhero.