After earning his fortune with Facebook, Dustin Moscovitz decided to go it alone in 2008. It’s a decision that’s paid off. This month sees his start-up, Asana, became a multibillion-dollar public company in its own right, putting Moscovitz back in the spotlight as one of his generation’s most successful (not to mention richest) entrepreneurs. At just 36 years old, he has a wife, a philanthropic foundation, a history of founding mega-successful companies, and a net worth that’s going to blow your mind as you work your way through these ten things you didn’t know about Dustin Moscovitz.
1. He’s not great at delegating
Speaking to Wavelength about what he’s learnt over the years about leadership, Moskovitz admitted there’s been one or two areas he’s sometimes struggled with – not least the art of delegating. ‘I’ve learned a lot over the years, but a key learning that I employ regularly (is that) not delegating enough is bad for me and bad for people who could be getting more autonomy and learning more skills,’ he admitted.
2. He’s a multi-billionaire
Moskovitz may have left Facebook over 12 years ago, but the move clearly didn’t dent his fortunes too badly (and neither has all the millions he’s donated to good causes over the years). According to Forbes, the entrepreneur is currently sat on the mammoth net worth of $15.9B, most of which derives from his estimated 2% stake in Facebook. A sizeable fortune by any one’s standards… although Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth of $92.9 billion must be a bit of a quick in the teeth.
3. He left Facebook after 4 years
In 2004, Moskovitz teamed up with his college roommate Mark Zuckerberg to launch Facebook. Despite being instrumental in the creation of the platform and progressing from the company’s first chief technology officer to the vice president of engineering (not to mention owning a very nice 2.34% share in all future profits), Moskovitz called it quits in 2008 after 4 years with the company. After handing in his employee badge at FB’s HQ, he launched Asana, a web and mobile app that’s designed to help teams maximize their productivity and organize their workload.
4. He was once the youngest self-made billionaire in the world
In 2011, Moskovitz made history when Forbes named him the youngest self-made billionaire in the world, ever. The achievement came not just from his $2.7 billion net worth (as it was then) but from the distinct advantage of having been born 8 days before Mark Zuckerberg, a man who at the time was worth the even more significant sum of $13.5 billion.
5. He’s off the market
If any ladies were hoping to bag themselves a young billionaire, they might need to cast a wider net. Moskovitz might have spent the last two decades building his fortune, but he’s not been slacking in his personal life either. The entrepreneur is married to Cari Tuna, a former writer for Yale Daily News and current contributor to The Wall Street Journal. Tuna currently dedicates most of her time to the couple’s foundation, Good Ventures, along with the Good Ventures and GiveWell collaboration, Open Philanthropy Project.
6. He’s no fan of The Social Network
The Social Network may have gone down a storm with critics and the general public, but there were a couple of people that failed to see the film’s charm… Moskovitz being one of them. Speaking during a question/ answer session on Quora after the film’s release, Moskovitz (who was portrayed by Joseph Mazzello in the film), criticized the film for “(emphasizing) things that didn’t matter (like the Winklevosses, whom I’ve still never even met and had no part in the work we did) and leaves out things we really did (like the many other people in our lives at the time, who supported us in so many ways)”.
7. He’s an out and proud Democrat
Moskovitz is many things. What he is not is a Trump fan. The long time Democrat supporter came out during the last presidential election to voice his support for Hilary Clinton, and (to put it mildly) his ‘disdain’ for Trump. Speaking to the New York Times at the time, he opined “The Republican Party, and Donald Trump in particular, is running on a zero-sum vision, stressing a false contest between their constituency and the rest of the world.” Putting his money where his mouth is, he subsequently went on to donate $20 million to Clinton’s campaign, becoming the third-largest donor in the 2016 campaign in the process.
8. He’s all about giving
Moskovitz’s generosity doesn’t just extend to giving vast sums of money to political candidates. In 2011, he and his wife founded Good Ventures, a philanthropic organization that over the past decade has donated around $100 million to good causes such as Against Malaria Foundation, GiveDirectly, Schistosomiasis Control Initiative, and Deworm the World Initiative. He and his wife have also earned the distinction of becoming the youngest couple to sign up to The Giving Pledge, Bill Gates and Warren Buffet’s joint venture to encourage the rich and the famous to donate most of their wealth to philanthropic causes.
9. He’s calmed down with age
As a young twenty-something, Moskovitz was the definition of a hothead, But the man who was once known as one of Facebook’s fieriest personalities has mellowed nicely with age, something he attributes to no longer sweating the small stuff or agonizing over setbacks. Speaking to Forbes about his change in outlook, he invokeed mindfulness expert Jon Kabat-Zinn with the phrase “You can’t stop the waves from coming, but you can learn to surf.”
10. He’s a regular at Burning Man
If ever you wanted to see what a reluctant billionaire looks like, take a glance at a photo of Dustin Moskovitz. Despite his vast wealth, he regularly flies economy, has been spotted behind the wheel of a Volkswagen hatchback, and is a regular at Burning Man.