Last Updated: February 23, 2024
Richest BusinessCEOs
Net Worth:
$500 Million
Apr 22, 1985 (38 years old)
Chicago, Illinois, US
💰 Compare Sam Altman's Net Worth

What is Sam Altman's Net Worth?

Sam Altman is an entrepreneur, programmer, investor and blogger who has a net worth of $500 million. Sam Altman is best known for being the former president/CEO of both the artificial intelligence research laboratory OpenAI, and the technology startup accelerator Y Combinator.

Through his capacity at Y Combinator and his personal investments, Altman is major angel investor, having invested in such companies as Reddit, Asana, Zenefits, Instacart, Soylent, and Airbnb. Reddit's February 2024 pre-IPO filing revealed that Sam owns 8.7% of Reddit.

Interestingly, in March 2023 it was revealed that Sam Altman did not take any equity in OpenAI. That presumably means he did not benefit significantly from the company's exploding private valuation.

Sam Altman was fired from OpenAI on Friday, November 17, 2023. After a wild weekend of back and forth boardroom battles, Sam was reinstated as CEO late on the evening of November 21st.

Early Life and Education

Sam Altman was born on April 22, 1985 in Chicago, Illinois. He was raised in St. Louis, Missouri, and went to John Burroughs School, a college preparatory school in the suburb of Ladue. For his higher education, Altman attended Stanford University, where he studied computer science; however, he ended up dropping out in 2005.

Career Beginnings

At the age of only 19 in 2005, Altman co-founded the company Loopt; he also became its CEO. The company offered a geo-social networking mobile application that allowed users to share their locations with other people on a selective basis. Despite the fact that Altman managed to raise over $30 million in venture capital for Loopt, the company was shut down in 2012 when it failed to gain traction. It was subsequently purchased by Green Dot Corporation.

Y Combinator

In 2011, Altman became a part-time partner at Y Combinator, a technology startup accelerator that has helped launch over 3,000 companies, such as Airbnb, Dropbox, DoorDash, Reddit, and Twitch. A few years later, in 2014, Altman became the new president of the company, replacing Paul Graham. In his first round of investments, he included his company Loopt. Altman also began a new deal for startups, offering $150,000 for 7% equity. In 2015, he announced the creation of YC Continuity, a $700 million growth-stage equity fund that invests in the companies of Y Combinator. The same year, Altman announced the formation of Y Combinator Research, a non-profit research lab that focuses on researching education, basic income, urban development, and the future of computing.

In 2016, Altman announced that he would become the president of YC Group, which is comprised of Y Combinator as well as the other units. Three years later, he transitioned to the position of chairman so he could focus more on his other company, OpenAI. Altman was replaced as CEO of YC Group by Geoff Ralston in 2019, and today is no longer associated with the company.

Sam Altman Net Worth

(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)


Along with Elon Musk and a number of other investors, Altman announced the creation of OpenAI in December of 2015, and pledged more than $1 billion to its operation. Comprised of the for-profit corporation OpenAI LP and the non-profit OpenAI Inc., its parent company, OpenAI conducts research in the sphere of artificial intelligence. Its goal is to promote and develop friendly AI that will prove beneficial to all of humanity. Altman serves as the CEO of the company, which is headquartered in the Mission District of San Francisco.

OpenAI has released many products and applications. In 2016, it released a public beta of Gym, the platform it uses to conduct reinforcement learning research. The same year, the company launched Universe, a software platform used to train and measure an AI's overall intelligence across the world's millions of websites, games, and applications. Later, in 2020, OpenAI announced the creation of GPT-3, a language model that automatically produces human-like text by assimilating trillions of words from all corners of the Internet. Moreover, it can translate between different languages.

On January 10, 2023 OpenAI raised money from Microsoft in a private funding round that valued the company at $29 billion. Microsoft reportedly plans to integrate future versions of GPT into its Bing search results.

As we stated in the beginning of this article, Sam did not take any equity in OpenAi before agreeing to become CEO.

Sam Altman was fired from OpenAI on November 17, 2023. It was not immediately clear why OpenAI's board reached the decision to oust Altman. And then just a few days later, Sam was reinstated as CEO late on the evening of November 21st.

Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Angel Investing

Altman is a significant figure in the world of agent investing. He has invested in such major companies as Airbnb, Reddit, Asana, Pinterest, Teespring, Instacart, Vicarious, Soylent, Verbling, and Stripe. Additionally, he served as the CEO of Reddit for eight days in 2014, succeeding Yishan Wong.

Reddit Stake

In February 2024 Reddit filed an S-1 document in preparation of its pending IPO. This filing revealed that Sam owns 8.7% of Reddit. That's more than double the stake held by Reddit's CEO Steve Huffman.

Other Endeavors

Beyond his entrepreneurial and investment work, Altman serves as chairman of the board for the nuclear energy companies Oklo and Helion. He has claimed that nuclear energy is among the world's most critical areas for technological development.

On the philanthropic side of things, Altman had a strong hand in funding Project Covalence, a group devoted to helping researchers launch rapid clinical COVID-19 trials in partnership with the startup TrialSpark. Altman also donated a quarter of a million dollars in 2020 to American Bridge 21st Century, a Super-PAC in support of Joe Biden's presidential campaign.

Personal Life

Altman is gay, having come out in his youth. In 2024 he married Australian software engineer Oliver Mulherin. Although he never finished his undergraduate education at Stanford, Altman was given an honorary degree from the University of Waterloo in 2017.

Real Estate & Car Collection

Sam Altman owns around $100 million worth of real estate, mostly on the West Coast of the United States (including Hawaii). He bought $85 million worth of real estate in just under two years between 2020 and 2022. Here's a breakdown of his real estate portfolio:

  • In March 2020 Sam paid $27 million for a mansion in San Francisco's Russian Hill neighborhood. In addition to a primary residence, the home has a separate "wellness center" with infinity pool.
  • In December 2020 Sam paid $15.7 million for a 950-acre estate in Napa, California. The estate, which is just 15 minutes from downtown Napa, features a 12,000 square feet of living space across five residences, two huge private lake and endless rolling hills.
  • In July 2021 Sam paid $43 million for a 12-bedroom, 12,000 square foot, oceanfront estate on Hawaii's Big Island.

Sam is also a noted car collector. He owns one of 2,450 Tesla Roadsters that were produced. He owns a 2013 Model S. More impressively, he owns at least two McLarens, one of which is valued at over $15 million.

All net worths are calculated using data drawn from public sources. When provided, we also incorporate private tips and feedback received from the celebrities or their representatives. While we work diligently to ensure that our numbers are as accurate as possible, unless otherwise indicated they are only estimates. We welcome all corrections and feedback using the button below.
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