Mysterious Twitter Investor to Make Big Bucks on IPO

Suhail Rizvi's equity firm amassed 15% stake, says Reuters

By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff

Posted Oct 4, 2013 9:50 AM CDT

(Newser) – As Twitter prepares to go public, there's plenty of people waiting in the wings to cash in; yesterday's filings reveal investment firms, board members, and execs will have the highest payouts, but one mysterious Hollywood financier also will add a good chunk of change to his bank account. Suhail Rizvi, whose clients include Richard Branson and Prince Alwaleed bin Talal of Saudi Arabia, has quietly set his hands on 15% of the company—split among himself and investors—at a cost of more than $1 billion, Reuters reports. Some 10% of that came from Twitter's co-founder Evan Williams, who sold the shares to Rizvi in 2010 for $340 million.

It's still unclear how much is Rizvi's personally—thanks in part to his love of secrecy. Reuters has this great example: The 47-year-old pays someone to take down his Wikipedia page and ensure no photos of him appear on the Internet. It's doubtful Rizvi will get the largest single payout, however. The best bet there is Williams himself, whose 12% stake is worth $1.2 billion, reports the New York Times.

In this Feb. 2, 2013, file photo, a smartphone display shows the Twitter logo in Berlin, Germany.   (AP Photo/dpa, Soeren Stache, File)
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