Our Haute 100 list details the accomplishments of the most influential people in each of our markets—Miami, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. These people continue to make moves, so rather than waiting for the next Haute 100 issue to come out, we thought we’d provide you with regular updates on those Haute 100 members who are making headlines. Check back daily for more info on the most powerful people in your city. Today, Ray Dolby proves that his ability to drown out sound has ingeniously kept him afloat.
Company: Dolby Laboratories
What Made Him Haute: His genius mind is what makes Ray Dolby haute. It’s one thing to be able to wheel and deal or use street smarts to make millions, but when one can parlay a scientific mind into a windfall of fortune while simultaneously transforming the way Americans experience sound, then they’re definitely haute enough for us. Dolby was the inventor of the noise reduction system known as Dolby NR, who went on to co-invent audio and video tape recording. In 1965, he founded Dolby Laboratories to umbrella all of his future electronic inventions.
What Makes Him Haute Now: Dolby, who is considered the largest stockholder of his trade, banked in on selling 40,000 of his shares upon peaking, making him $2.6 million. This amount may seem a bit modest for this tech virtuoso, who is now worth $3.5 billion. Dolby Laboratories increased revenue by 19 percent from 2009, to about $243 million. In turn, Dolby climbed from No. 296 on Forbes’ Billionaires List to No. 258.