Bloomberg Billionaires Index

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# 207 Tim Sweeney $9.63B

Random fact: Fortnite has hosted live concerts with Travis Scott and Diplo.

Overview

Sweeney is the founder and chief executive officer of Epic Games, the developer behind Fortnite, the online multi-player, free-to-play video game released in 2017. Epic also owns group chat app Houseparty and game-development platform Unreal Engine. The Cary, North Carolina-based company had revenue of $5.1 billion in 2020.

As of :
Last change No change
YTD change +$253M ( +2.7%)
Biggest asset Epic Games
Country / Region United States
Age 51
Industry Technology
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

Tim Sweeney's net worth of $9.63B can buy ...

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troy ounces of gold
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barrels of crude oil

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

Latest News

Net Worth Summary

Cash
Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

The majority of Sweeney's fortune stems from his stake in Epic Games, the video game developer he founded in 1991. The valuation is based on an April 2022 funding round that raised $2 billion and valued the business at $31.5 billion.

Sweeney's stake in the business is calculated at 28% following prior investments by Sony, KKR, Tencent and others over the past decade. He remains the controlling shareholder, according to the company. This analysis assumes that term refers to voting control and not his equity stake.

Sweeney's cash holdings are based on Epic shares he's estimated to have sold in a 2018 transaction whereby a consortium of investors led by KKR paid $1.25 billion for a stake that valued the whole company at almost $15 billion.

Nick Chester, a spokesperson for Epic Games, said the billionaire declined to comment on his net worth.

Biography

Birthdate: 12/1/1970
Family: Single, No children

Tim Sweeney was born in Maryland in 1970. Interested in computers from an early age, he began teaching himself to program on his family's Apple machine at the age of 11.

After graduating with a mechanical engineering degree from the University of Maryland, he started a one-man computer consulting business out of his parents basement. His early business evolved into a developer of video games, which Sweeney would create then mail out to customers on floppy disks.

Sweeney moved the business to North Carolina in 1999 and changed the name to Epic Games. Best known as the creator of mega-hit, Fortnite, Epic was also behind the influential best-seller, Gears of War. Epic also owns Unreal Engine, one of two widely used operating systems developers rely on for building games. Sweeney and his partners sold a 40 percent stake in Epic Games to Chinese internet company, Tencent, at an $825 million valuation in 2012.

Fortnite -- which Epic released as a paid game in 2017 before making it free -- became a global phenomenon shortly after its launch, with hundreds of millions of players around the world. Rapper Drake and the Los Angeles Lakers’ Josh Hart are among it's celebrity fans. Despite being free, the game generated more than $9 billion in revenue in 2018 and 2019 combined from users purchasing V-bucks, a virtual currency can be exchanged during play for outfits, called skins, celebratory dances or special missions.

Sweeney lives near the company's Cary, North Carolina-based headquarters. He spearheaded Epic's 2021 lawsuit against Apple over the tech company's App Store payment policies. The judge made a split decision ruling, affirming the App Store's structure as legal but banning it from requiring buyers to use its own payment system.

An active conservationist, Sweeney has helped preserve more than 7,000 acres of the state's mountains and forestland.

Milestones
  • 1981 Sweeney begins to teach himself to program on family's Apple computer.
  • 1991 Founds Epic Games from his parents' basement in suburban Maryland.
  • 2011 Epic Games announce it's working on a new game called Fortnite.
  • 2012 Epic Games sells 40 percent stake to Tencent for $825 million.
  • 2017 Fortnite is released to paid early access subscribers.
  • 2018 KKR leads consortium that acquires a $1.25 billion stake in Epic Games.