Net Net: Promoting innovation and managing change
Net Net: Promoting innovation and managing change

Tech Takes Charge: Vanity Fair’s New Establishment

Tim Cook, Apple Chief Operating Officer
Getty Images

So long Lloyd Blankfein. Bye-bye Warren Buffett.

It’s Tim Cook’s time.

Vanity Fair’s “New Establishment” list hit newsstands today.

And one of the first things you notice is that the list is no longer a who’s who of Hollywood, or fashion or Wall Street.

It’s now dominated by the biggest names in tech and business.

Silicon Valley leaders have the lock on the top ten, with Apple’s Cook and Jonathan Ive snatching the crown from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, who had taken the top slot for the last two years but has now fallen down to fourth. Google’s Larry Page and Sergey Brin take the number two position, followed by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos.

At No. 7, Marissa Mayer breaks into the digital boys’ club after her move to Yahoo made her the youngest Fortune 500 CEO and one of only 20 women to hold the CEO title at a large U.S. company.

Pay-Pal co-founder Elon Musk rockets to 9th place from 31st last year, thanks to a banner year at Tesla Motors , which has seen its stock rise 56 percent since the 2010 IPO, while his second company, Space-X, successfully sent the first private spacecraft to the International Space Station last May.

Widely regarded as a modern-day Henry Ford, Terry Gou (No. 15) runs Foxconn, the world’s largest gadget-maker, employing nearly a million people in dozens of factories across China. Little-known fact, he started Foxconn with a $7,500 loan and ten workers back in 1974.

Since taking over the reins at Allen & Co. Herb Allen III (No. 18) has maintained a pretty low profile in the press, but is a powerful behind-the-scenes player in countless tech deals including LinkedIn, Pandora, Zillow, Groupon and Facebook . And keep an eye on Allen’s up-and-coming conference next spring in Arizona, which attracts a younger, hipper and smaller crowd than Allen & Co.’s Sun Valley confab.

Paul Graham (No. 27) has quietly become one of the most influential power-brokers on Sandhill Road, mentoring and seeding hundreds of startups through Y Combinator, oftentimes selling them to the likes of Google and Facebook. The reclusive investor is a true Renaissance man, earning a Ph.D. in computer science from Harvard, and studying art history at Florence’s Accademia di Belle Arti and RISD.

New York’s burgeoning Silicon Alley is represented by venture capitalist Fred Wilson (No. 23), managing partner, Union Square Ventures & Flatiron Partners. Some of his winning investments include Twitter, Tumblr, FourSquare, Zynga, Etsy and Meetup. Fun fact: He sold his Manhattan town house for $33 million, yet favors a beat-up bicycle for commuting around the city.

The tech start-up scene is heavily represented. FourSquare founder Dennis Crowley is at 49, followed by Groupon’s Andrew Mason. Tumblr founder David Karp, Twitter and Square founder Jack Dorsey, Pinterest’s Ben Silbermann, and Gilt Groupe’s Kevin Ryan all make the list. Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher, tech reporters from All Things D, also rank.

Of course, creative types in the entertainment industry have still carved out a place on the New Establishment list. “Avengers” writer-director Joss Whedon (No. 12) and "Fifty Shades of Grey" author E.L. James (No. 24) made the cut. Grammy-winning singer Adele (No. 11) beats out Lady Gaga (No. 16).

For the second year in a row, Vanity Fair has banished Wall Street from the New Establishment. GoldmanSachs CEO Blankfein, who was ranked in the top place in 2009, is nowhere to be seen. Larry Fink of Blackrock, ranked 15 in 2010, is gone. JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, number 30 in 2010, has been thrown out of the New Establishment. Berkshire Hathaway chief Warren Buffett is outranked by Ashton Kutcher.

The October issue of Vanity Fair will be available on newsstands in New York and L.A. on September 6, and nationally and on the iPad, Nook, and Kindle later in September.


Tim Cook and Jonathan Ive, Apple

Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google

Jeff Bezos, Amazon

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook

Jack Dorsey, Twitter, Square

Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz, Andreessen Horowitz

Marissa Mayer, Yahoo

Ben Silbermann, Pinterest

Elon Musk, SpaceX, Tesla Motors, SolarCity

Reid Hoffman and Jeff Weiner, LinkedIn

Adele, singer, songwriter

Joss Whedon, writer, director

Dick Costolo, Twitter

John Lasseter, Pixar, Walt Disney Animation Studios

Terry Gou, Foxconn

Lady Gaga, singer

Preet Bharara, attorney

Herb Allen III, Allen & Co.

The Hacker

Yuri Milner, DST Global

Natalie Massenet, Net-a-Porter Group

Seth MacFarlane, writer, director, producer

Fred Wilson, Union Square Ventures

E. L. James, author

Ashton Kutcher, actor, investor

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, the Row

Paul Graham, Y Combinator

Christopher Nolan, director

Jeremy Stoppelman, Yelp

Salar Kamangar and Robert Kyncl, YouTube

Will Ferrell, Chris Henchy, and Adam McKay, Funny or Die

Dan Doctoroff, Bloomberg LP

Louis CK, comedian

Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher, All Things D

Judd Apatow, film producer, writer, and director

Tyler Perry, director, writer, actor, and producer

Peter Thiel, Founders Fund

Ryan Seacrest, host, producer

Susan Wojcicki, Google

Reed Hastings and Ted Sarandos, Netflix

Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook

Kevin Ryan, Gilt Groupe, Business Insider

Lena Dunham, writer, director

David Karp, Tumblr

Mark Pincus, Zynga

Ali Pincus and Susan Feldman, One Kings Lane

Sal Khan, Khan Academy

Daniel Ek, Spotify

Dennis Crowley, Foursquare

Andrew Mason, Groupon

- by Kerima Greene, senior talent producer, CNBC’s Power Lunch and John Carney, senior editor, CNBC/NetNet

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