Many of the people who made the 30 under 30 list have gone on to become tech titans, CEOs and even billionaires. However, others have been less successful and for some that is an understatement. From Sam Bankman-Fried to Martin Shkreli to Nate Paul, here are ten controversial figures who are or were on the 30 under 30 list.
Article translated from Forbes USA – Author: Forbes Under 30 Team
13 years already, Forbes publishes its annual 30 under 30 list. In the United States, the list now includes 20 different categories each year, for a total of 600 personalities. If we add the old lists in Europe and Asia, Forbes it has awarded more than 10,000 miracles and screened about 100,000 candidates. Many of these personalities have become cultural creators, tech titans, even billionaires for 32 of them and counting.
However, Forbes also harbors some regrets. While the selection process rightfully eliminated the likes of the Fyre festival impresario Billy McFarland and even Elizabeth Holmes, one-day superstars who all turned out to be frauds, others slipped through the cracks. Here are ten options on which Forbes would love to come back. More will be added to this list over the years because the 30 under 30 list is inherently forward-looking and even Warren Buffett cannot predict with 100% accuracy.
Founder, FTX | Finance Under 30, Class of 2021
At the beginning of 2022, investors valued at 40 billion dollars cryptocurrency exchange FTX of Sam Bankman-Fried based in the Bahamas and its activities in the United States. Less than two years later, Sam Bankman-Fried was convicted of seven counts of fraud and conspiracy. In particular, he was accused of transferring billions of dollars in client assets from FTX to its sister company Alameda research to finance losses, political donations and other investments. The man whose property he appraised Forbes over 26 billion dollars, now faces up to 110 years in prison. His sentencing is scheduled for March.
Co-CEO, Alameda Research | Finance Under 30, Class of 2022
Another victim of FTX. Caroline Ellison was the girlfriend of Sam Bankman-Fried, who ran his crypto trading operation Alameda research. In December 2022, once vaunted math genius Caroline Ellison pleaded guilty to fraud and conspiracy for transferring billions of dollars belonging to FTX clients to cover Alameda Research’s losses. This fall, Caroline Ellison became a federal witness in the FTX fraud trial and gave incriminating testimony against Sam Bankman-Fried. She also faces a maximum sentence of 110 years in prison for her role in the fraud, but her cooperation is likely to earn her a lighter sentence.
Founder, Frank | Finance Under 30, Class of 2019
In 2019, Charlie Javice earned around $16 million Candid, his startup that promised to help students get financial aid. In 2021, she sold the startup, which according to her had 4.25 million users at the time JPMorgan Chase For 175 million dollars. problem? Charlie Javice didn’t have nearly the number of clients she claimed to have. She has since been charged with fraud and conspiracy for making false statements about the company’s size. His trial is scheduled to begin in October. Charlie Javice contested the charges and pleaded not guilty.
Founder, World Class Capital Group | Finance Under 30, Class of 2016
Nate Paul has built a real estate empire that in 2017 was valued at approx billion dollarsmainly shopping centers and office buildings through his company World Class Capital Group, based in Texas. However, in June 2023, Nate Paul was charged with eight counts of lying to creditors and then charged with four more counts of fraud and conspiracy. He pleaded not guilty to all charges. His trial is scheduled for July 2024.
Founder of MSMB Capital | Finance Under 30, Class of 2013
Martin Shkreli was hailed as a prodigy entrepreneur when he founded two pharmaceutical hedge funds in his 20s. He then founded two pharmaceutical companies, Retrofin AND Turing. Two years after appearing on the 30 under 30 list, ” farm bro » became “the most hated man in America” for raising the price of Daraprim, a life-saving drug used to treat parasitic infections owned by Turing, from $17.50 per tablet to $750. He was brought before Congress but refused to testify. PUSH Federal Trade Commission she eventually filed a lawsuit which she won and Martin Shkreli was fined 65 million dollars. He was also banned from the pharmaceutical industry for life. However, by then Martin Shkreli had already been jailed for making false statements about the finances of his two hedge funds and for attempting to manipulate stocks Retrofin. He was paroled from federal prison in May 2022 after serving a four-year sentence.
Founder of Defense Distributed | Under 30 Law and Policy, Class of 2014
As a University of Texas law student, Cody Wilson made a name for himself by posting blueprints online that allowed anyone to 3D print a functional gun. This coup created a legal storm over the “ghost weapon” and drew into the battle both the 1ahem and 2E amendment to the United States Constitution. However, it wasn’t the gun controversy that landed him on the villain list. In 2019, Cody Wilson pleaded guilty to child molestation after he was arrested for paying $500 to have sex with a 16-year-old girl he met on Sugardaddymeet.com. He had to register as a sex offender.
Founder of Project Veritas | Media Under 30, Class of 2012
James O’Keefe led the conservative media company Project Veritas for 13 years before being ousted as the organization’s chief executive last February. He was removed from his position after staff and board members complained about his management style and misuse of donor funds for extravagant expenses, including flying on a private jet. In March, he launched a new media company: O’Keefe Media Group. Since August, James O’Keefe has again been under investigation by the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office. Prosecutors have not publicly said why.
Editor-in-Chief of Women Of The City Magazine | Europe under 30, media and marketing, class of 2023
Don’t even judge a magazine by its cover. In 2018, Phadria Prendergast published her magazine, Women of the City magazine (WOTC) to spotlight the stars of the world of entertainment and business. It emerged that she was suspected of running a fee-for-service scheme where cover was bought with cash. Even worse, Phadria Prendergast hasn’t always kept her end of the bargain. Investigation Forbes revealed that eleven former clients claimed she made off with approximately $195,000. where did the money go? Forbes discovered financial ties with Anointed Church of Salvation HeraldsSteed SPAC nation. The controversial church has been accused by former members of being a religious sect. Both Phadria Prendergast and the former CEO of WOTC denied that the magazine transferred funds to SPAC Nation. SPAC Nation denies cult allegations.
Co-Founder, Away | Retail and e-commerce under 30, class of 2016
In 2018, Steph Korey was the co-founder and CEO of the fashion luggage brand Away. Forbes in 2018, he featured her on the cover of his 30 under 30 issue. Then in 2019 The Verge published a critical article highlighting accounts by several employees that she bullied co-workers and imposed grueling workloads. In the process, Steph Korey surprised the tech world by resigning in December. A month later, she returned, this time as co-CEO with a former Lululemon executive, Stuart Haselden. Later, in July 2020, Steph Korey posted very controversial messages against the media industry on social media. These posts drew widespread criticism and apparently angered Away staff. Shortly afterwards, Away announced that Steph Korey would once again step down as CEO in early 2021.
Founder, Clinkle | Finance Under 30, Class of 2014
In 2014, Lucas Duplan looked like a fintech pioneer. His mobile payments startup, Clinkle, has raised an impressive round of funding 30 million dollars with leading investors, incl Richard Branson, Peter Thiel AND Andreessen Horowitz. With the ambition to make cash obsolete, Lucas Duplan hired dozens of people, attracted big names in technology and rented an expensive office in the heart of San Francisco. Despite significant fundraising and significant investors, Clinkle never came up with a viable product. Shortly after his massive fundraising, Lucas Duplan made massive layoffs. Top talent has left the company. Investors demanded their money back. By 2015, there were only around 30 employees left, compared to 70 at its peak. Meanwhile, Venmo and Apple Pay have launched competing products. By the end of 2015, Clinkle also ran out of money.
Read also: Arthur Auboeuf, a portrait of a winner under 30, a real “shareholder of the planet”