Blog / App Monetization / 21 Entrepreneurs Who Got Filthy Rich Through an App Idea

21 Entrepreneurs Who Got Filthy Rich Through an App Idea

Chandrapal Singh By Chandrapal Singh | December 15, 2019
youngest app developer millionaire

Kevin Systrom, the founder of Instagram, once said “If you’ve got an idea, start today. There’s no better time than now to get going. That doesn’t mean quit your job and jump into your idea 100% from day one, but there’s always small progress that can be made to start the movement.

This hit homes with app ideas and the major advancements that we are witnessing in the technically advanced world.

Yes, app ideas have become an integral part of our lives due to its capability to complete many tasks with a few taps to become revolutionary ideas that changed the world.

If anything there 2.4 million apps on Google Play Store and 1.8 million apps on Apple App Store as per Statista.

number of app in a leading app stores

The majority of these apps are for entertainment, games, and social media platforms that make even the famous players rethink their strategies. 

The most astounding thing is that there are app developers & mobile app development company and entrepreneurs that reached the level of million before they were legal enough to drink (a few of them).

It just needs revolutionary business ideas that can help in taking the business to a new level.

Let us go through some millionaire app developers who did an exceptional job to stand out of the crowd.

Make sure to know about Top 10 Most Profitable Revenue Generating Apps(With Category) before moving forward.

Entrepreneur’s list:
#1 Kevin Systrom
#2 Kunal Shah
#3 Hae Jin Lee
#4 Evan Spiegel
#5 Jan Koum
#6 Sean Rad
#7 Whitney Wolfe Herd
#8 Vijay Shekhar Sharma
#9 Allen Lau
#10 Byju Raveendran
#11 Didier Rappaport
#12 Daniel EK
#13 Chad Mureta
#14 Talmon Marco
#15 Clay Mathile
#16 Bhavish Aggarwal
#17 Joel Comm
#18 Dong Nguyen
#19 Nick D’Aloisio
#20 Uri Raz
#21 Robert Nay

Be The Next Billionaire

Can you become a millionaire by making an app? Well, yes someone did become a millionaire with a single app. Enjoy the 21 stunning names.

#1 Kevin Systrom

App – Instagram

Founded on – 6th October 2010

Revenue – Annual estimation $14 billions

Platform – iOS & Android

Nationality – American

  • Systrom along with Mike Krieger came up with an idea of photo and video-sharing social networking app in 2010.
  • The major focus of the app was to offer a communication platform that allows pictures and videos to do the talking. 
  • At the present time, Facebook owner Mark Zuckerberg is the owner of Instagram that becomes one of the app ideas for money and gains popularity.

#2 Kunal Shah

App – FreeCharge

Founded on – August 2010

Revenue – Annual estimation is $5.6 million

Platform – Android & iOS

Nationality – Indian

  • Kunal Shah and Sandeep Tandon launched FreeCharge to simplify the online recharge process under the ownership of Pluggd.in.
  • The technology startup expanded over time with Series B Funding of $33 million from Sofina, Sequoia Capital, and Ru-Net.
  • At the present time, FreeCharge is acquired by Snapdeal and the owner is Axis Bank along with CEO Siddhart Metha. SO, next time if someone asks you the question “how to get rich creating app” make sure to mention Kunal Shah’s name.

If you are planning to develop a finance app then make sure to visit How Much Does It Cost of Finance App Development

#3 Hae Jin Lee

App – Line

Founded on – June 2011

Revenue – Annual estimation 55.4 billion Yen

Platform – Android & iOS

Nationality – South Korean

  • Hae Jin Lee is the director and founder of South Korean Company Naver Corporation that launched Line.
  • The app was developed due to the damage in Japan’s telecommunication cause of the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami.
  • The app has become a social networking platform that offers users a platform to exchange video, texts, images, and audio along with VoIP conversations and video conferences.

#4 Evan Spiegel

App – Snapchat

Founded on – September 2011

Revenue – Annual estimation $388.02 millions 

Platform – iOS & Android

Nationality – American

  • Evan Spiegel along with Reggie Brown and Bobby Murphy started working on the prototype model (which was a class project) famously known as Picaboo that become the initial stage of Snapchat.
  • The idea of Snapchat is to offer a platform to the users where they can not only click the pictures with funny filters but also share them with friends. 
  • 26 years old Spiegel (now 29) is the youngest CEO for the public company.

#5 Jan Koum

App – WhatsApp

Founded on – January 2009

Revenue – Annual estimation $700 millions

Platform – iOS & Android

Nationality – American

  • Jan Koum along with Brain Acton changed the way of texting with a single app idea “WhatsApp”. As a matter of fact, Jan Koum inspires people with his rags-to-riches story
  • The app idea simply pops into his mind while surfing through the iPhone that made him discuss it with Alex Fishman.
  • At the present moment, Facebook-owner Mark Zuckerberg is the owner WhatsApp.

#6 Sean Rad

App – Tinder

Founded on – October 2013

Revenue – Annual estimation $805 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – American

  • Sean Rad along with Justin Mateen, Jonathan Badeen, Whitney Wolfe, Dinesh Moorjani, and Joe Munoz founded Tinder and was co-founder until 2016.
  • Rad came up with the idea of Tinder with Mateen that potentially eliminates the problem of approaching people.
  • Tinder achieved the first position for online dating services in the list of five utilized services

#7 Whitney Wolfe Herd

App – Bumble

Founded on – December 2014

Revenue – Annual estimation $335 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – American

  • The co-founder of Tinder, the dating app, left the company to launch her own dating app like Bumble with a bit of a twist.
  • In the app, only females have the authority to get in touch with the male users with whom they are matched with that makes it a feminist dating app.
  • Whitney is also the CEO of Chappy that is another dating app for males. 

#8 Vijay Shekhar Sharma

App – Paytm

Founded on – August 2010

Revenue – Annual estimation $ 520 million USD

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – Indian

  • Vijay Shekhar is also the owner of One97 Communications (parent company of Paytm).
  • Paytm was developed for the main purpose of recharging & paying bills such as DTH recharge, prepaid mobile recharge, and paying bills.
  • New features and options were added in the app ideas to make money over time and the present moment the app is ruling the online payment market.

To understand the latest trends in the payment market visit – Payment Trends That Are Set to Redefine the Future to Come

#9 Allen Lau

App – Wattpad

Founded on – December 2006

Revenue – Annual estimation $24.5 millions

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – Canadian

  • Allen Lau along with his close friend Ivan Yuen launched the app in 2006 with the concept to offer the free online reading platform.
  • Allen was the co-founder and CEO of FeedM8, prior to Wattpad, which was later on taken by Upstream Systems.
  • In the present time, there are more than 40 million stories available on the app with in-app purchase options available making it an app through which app developers who made money.

#10 Byju Raveendran

App – BYJU’s Learning App

Founded on – 2011

Revenue – Annual estimation $495 millions

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – Indian

  • BYJU’s is the educational technology-based app that offers online tutoring to users. It includes the premium model that generates revenue for the developers.
  • It offers next-level education to the students of primary class to higher secondary. Along with this, the app focuses on NEET, IIT-JEE, CSE, CAT, and international exams (GMAT & GRE)also.
  • The concepts of science and mathematics are covered up in just small modules of digital animation videos

#11 Didier Rappaport

App – Happn

Founded on – February 2014

Revenue – Annual estimation $62 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – European

  • Didier Rappaport served as the COO and co-founder of Dailymotion. Later on, he wanted to try his hand on the real-life interaction for the users.
  • More than 15 million users are using Happn to meet the people they cross paths with as per their locations.
  • He also co-founded Namao, a geo-localized search engine and Rappaport Consulting, a consulting company for startups and established businesses.

#12 Daniel EK

App – Spotify

Founded on – 23rd April 2006

Revenue – Annual estimation 1.67 bn Euros

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – Swedish

  • Daniel EK along with Martin Lorentzon co-founded Spotify to offer audio streaming services to the audience. 
  • He was the CEO of μTorrent for a brief time. Later, he started his company naming it Advertigo (acquired by TradeDoubler after some time).
  • In 2017, as per Billboard, the music industry’s most powerful person is Daniel Ek.

#13 Chad Mureta

App – Fingerprint Security-Pro

Founded on – 2010

Revenue – Annual estimation $900k

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – American

  • Starting the idea of Fingerprint Security Pro app was an accident (literally). Chad met with an accident and was hospitalized for a few months that made him skim through the app store, as a result, the security app idea popped into his head.
  • The fingerprint scanning technology was mimicked in the app that made it reach the 27th number at the iOS store. 
  • As in present, Project EVO was launched by Mureta that is growing in the market. It is one of the app ideas to become a billionaire.

#14 Talmon Marco

App – Viber

Founded on – 2010

Revenue – Annual estimation $513 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – Japanese

  • Marco along with his Israel Defense Forces friend Igor Magazinnik developed Viber as the instant messaging and cross-platform voice over IP platform.
  • The app was to make direct calls over the internet with the user phone number, unlike Skype that works on a password and registration.
  • Rakuten acquired Viber in February 2014 with a great return to both the co-founders. 

#15 Clay Mathile

App – ooVoo

Founded on – 2006

Revenue – Annual estimation $9 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – American

  • ooVoo is a messaging and video chat platform that is famous for video conferencing technology.
  • It focuses on high-quality video and audio calls for around 12 desktop sharing, and HD video
  • In 2011, the app added the social video chat service to the list to make HD video chat with other platforms.
  • In 2017, ooVoo shut down due to the huge loss.

#16 Bhavish Aggarwal

App – Ola Cabs

Founded on – 3rd December 2010

Revenue – Annual estimation $320 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – Indian

  • Bhavish along with Ankit Bhati developed Ola cabs, similar to Uber, in Bengaluru that took off amazingly well.
  • He also acquired TaxiForSure in 2015 and gradually spread Ola’s domain in the food industry as well.
  • Bhati and Aggarwal are the youngest richest Indians as per the 2015 records.

To know more about the development of taxi-booking apps, visit – How To Develop A Taxi Booking App Like Uber

#17 Joel Comm

App – iFart

Founded on – 4th December 2008

Revenue – Estimated revenue not available.

Platform – iOS 

Nationality – American

  • iFart is considered as the humorous app that is developed with the intent of making jokes with fart-like sound on triggering or change in phone position.
  • It is one of the best selling apps on the store that is ruling the iPhone market especially among celebrities including Lance Armstrong and George Clooney.
  • Comm also works as an internet marketer and author. He is also the CEO of InfoMedia with one of the humorous apps that made millions.

#18 Dong Nguyen

App – Flappy Bird

Founded on – 24th May 2013

Revenue – Annual estimation $18.25 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – Vietnamese

  • Nguyen developed a game based on the side-scroller features that control a bird and help it to fly which becomes one of the simple apps that make money.
  • The game gained a lot of popularity over time with a few hiccups in the free app. However, over time, Nguyen added in-app advertisements to generate revenue via mobile apps.
  • At present, the game is available on Amazon Fire TV as part of Flappy Birds Family. As for the Flappy Bird for phone, it is no longer available in the store.

#19 Nick D’Aloisio 

App – Summly/Trimit 

Founded on – March 2011

Revenue – Annual estimation $30 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – British

  • D’Aloisio worked on the Trimit app idea that condenses the blog posts and emails with an algorithm for the iOS platform. 
  • On redesigning the app, after feedback, D’Aloisio changed the name of the app to Summly in 2011 December.
  • Yahoo acquired the app in 2013 March where D’Aloisio joined as the product manager.

#20 Uri Raz

App – Tango

Founded on – September 2009

Revenue – Annual estimation $20 million

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – American

  • Raz along with Eric Setton developed Tango as the simple and free messaging app.
  • Tango is a cross-platform app that is used for free messaging. The application added voice, video, games, and photo sharing.
  • As for the present, there are different features added in the application to support GIFs and search features.

#21 Robert Nay

App – Bubble Ball

Founded on – 22nd December 2010

Revenue – Annual estimation $60k millions

Platform – iOS and Android

Nationality – Spanish

  • The 14-years old boy took the mobile app development world on fire when he developed a game based on physics making him the youngest app developer millionaire.
  • The Software development kit owner Corona Labs made it the best app of the week in 2011 January. 
  • Nay has his own brand for the game development under the name Nay Games.

Be The Next Billionaire

Many names on the list are of the people that become a billionaire when they were not even adult enough to drink or party. It is just about the iOS and Android market status along with the innovative ideas that can take the economy to the next level.

The App Market

Even TechCrunch predicted that by 2021, we will be witnessing the worth of $6.3 trillion with just a mobile app that was noted $53 billion in 2012.

If you are all set to be the part of this enhanced world then make sure to polish up your skills and come up with the next billionaire app ideas that haven’t been made yet.

Chandrapal Singh
Chandrapal Singh

A technocrat and an entrepreneur who is the Co-Founder and Chief Delivery Head at Appventurez. Skilled in object-oriented programming (OOP), iOS Development, Design Principles, Data Structures, and Swift, he has served different organizations as Tech Lead.

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