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# 204 Jim Goodnight $9.97B

Random fact: Friends with former Los Angeles Rams quarterback Roman Gabriel.


Goodnight is the chief executive officer and largest shareholder of SAS Institute, a closely held software maker. The Cary, North Carolina-based company provides software and data services to more than 80,000 sites and reported revenue of $3.2 billion in 2021. The billionaire owns two-thirds of SAS.

As of :
Last change -$20.3M ( -0.2%)
YTD change +$790M ( +8.6%)
Biggest asset SAS Institute
Country / Region United States
Age 80
Industry Technology
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

Jim Goodnight's net worth of $9.97B can buy ...

troy ounces of gold
barrels of crude oil

... and is equivalent to ...

of the GDP of the United States
of the total wealth of the 500 richest people in the world
of the top 100 U.S. college endowments
of the top 200 U.S. executives’ total awarded compensation
of U.S. existing home sales
times the median U.S. household income

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Net Worth Summary

Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

The majority of Goodnight's fortune is derived from his 66% stake in SAS Institute, a closely held software company. His stake is determined from a Wharton Business School case study in 2000. Co-founder John Sall owns the balance.

SAS had revenue of $3.2 billion in 2021, according to the 2022 company overview. It doesn't publish any other financial information. The valuation is based on the average enterprise value-to-sales multiple of two publicly traded peers: Oracle and SAP. The peer group used in the analysis was changed on June 24, 2022 and this led to a decrease in the calculation of about $2.5 billion.

The company's software is installed at more than 80,000 business, government and university sites, according to its website.

Shannon Heath, a spokeswoman for SAS, declined to comment on Goodnight's net worth.


Family: Married, 3 children

Goodnight began planting the seeds for what would become SAS Institute while working on his doctorate at North Carolina State University.

Created as an analytics specialist for big pharmaceutical and agriculture businesses in 1976, the Cary, North Carolina-based outfit now provides business intelligence software and services to a broad client base, including utilities, communications companies, schools, banks and casinos.

With his wife, Ann, Goodnight co-founded an independent college preparatory day school, Cary Academy, with the goal of integrating technology into all facets of education. He also created SAS inSchool, which develops teaching software to help build stronger curriculums.

  • 1943 James H. Goodnight is born in Salisbury, North Carolina.
  • 1961 Enrolls at North Carolina State University, meets John Sall.
  • 1972 Takes a teaching position at N.C. State.
  • 1976 Founds SAS Institute with Sall, Jim Barr and Jane Helwig.
  • 1996 Co-founds the college prep school Cary Academy.
  • 1998 SAS makes first appearance on Fortune's Best Place to Work list.
  • 1999 Annual revenue tops $1 billion.
  • 2005 Co-authors "Managing for Creativity" in Harvard Business Review.