Sam Altman Net Worth: How Much Is the Ex-Open AI CEO Worth?

Samuel Harris Altman aka Sam Altman is an American entrepreneur and investor. He served as the CEO of OpenAI from 2020 to 2023 and was recently discharged from his responsibilities. He also served as the President of Y Combinator, an American technology startup accelerator from 2011 to 2019.

Samuel Harris Altman was born to Jewish parents on April 22, 1985. His mother was a dermatologist and spent his early growing years in St. Louis, Missouri. He was only eight when he received an Apple Macintosh computer. He finished his schooling at John Burroughs School, a private school in Ladue, Missouri. He joined Stanford University in 2005 and started studying computer science. However, after one year he quit without a bachelor’s degree.

Sam Altman

At 19 Altman became the co-founder of Loopt which was a location-based social networking mobile application. As the CEO of the company, he was able to raise $30 million as seed money. However Loopt did not fare well and did not gain many users and in March 2012, it was acquired by the Green Dot Corporation for $43.4 million.

Altman with his brother then founded the Hydrazine Capital the following month. Altman was also the CEO of Reddit for a week in 2014 when CEO Yishan Wong resigned. Later Steve Huffman joined as CEO of the social news website and forum on July 10, 2015.

Altman joined Y Combinator in 2011 as a partner but worked on a part-time basis before he was made the president in February 2014 by its co-founder, Paul Graham. As per Altman, Y Combinator did exceptionally well under his tutelage and surpassed $65 billion, including Airbnb, Dropbox, Zenefits, and Stripe. He also widened his role as the president of YC Group, which included Y Combinator and other units.

Sam Altman OpenAI

Altman wanted Y Combinator to bankroll 1000 new startups every year and also started expanding YC funding for “hard technology” companies. He also created YC Continuity, a $700 million equity fund investing in YC companies as they started finding their feet. In March 2019, Altman was made the Chairman of the Board so that he could focus more on OpenAI. However, by 2020 he had severed all association with YC. 

In 2019, Altman started ‘Tools For Humanity‘ which aimed at creating a global iris-based biometric system using a cryptocurrency, called Worldcoin. The stated aim of Worldcoin was to create a reliable method to authenticate humans online as a counter to fake identities created by AI. Altman 2020 had been fully involved in OpenAI which was initially funded by Altman, Greg Brockman, Elon Musk, Jessica Livingston, Peter Thiel, Microsoft, Amazon Web Services, Infosys, and YC Research. Sam Altman continued as CEO till November 17, 2023, when it was revealed that the OpenAI’s board has decided to remove Altman as CEO based on a lack of confidence.

Why was Sam Altman fired from Open AI?

It was a bolt from the blue when the people woke up with the news that Sam Altman was fired by the OpenAI board. In a scathing letter, OpenAI Board said that the action was needed because of the lack of communication between Altman and the Board which was hindering the smooth functioning of OpenAI.

Altman was the face of OpenAI and he is credited with the success of ChatGPT. He was often referred as one of the industry visionaries and geniuses after the success of ChatGPT. The Board has appointed Mira Murati, an Albanian origin, as its interim CEO. Details of the behind-the-scenes activities are not known but judging by the scathing blog that detailed Altman’s ouster, something nasty must have happened. Company President Greg Brockman, who backed Altman, has also resigned.

Sam Altman’s Stake in OpenAI

Sam Altman didn’t have any equity in the $27 billion worth of OpenAI which he co-founded and has been recently ousted as the CEO. In March 2023, in an interview with New York Times, Sam said that the only thing he stands to gain is an “immaterial” fraction of his initial investment in the company.

How much is Sam Altman’s net worth?

Sam Altman’s net worth according to TheStreet is estimated to be between $500 and $700 million. Most of his wealth came from his entrepreneurial ventures as well as some very smart investments.

Samuel Harris Altman Wiki

Born April 22, 1985 (age 38)
Place Of Birth Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Education Stanford University (dropped out)
Occupation Entrepreneur
Known for Loopt, Y Combinator, OpenAI