Works for search giant by day, studies for exams at night
A British teenagers has become one of the country’s youngest millionaires after selling his smartphone app to Yahoo.
Nick D’Aloisio, 17, designed and built Summly, an iPhone app that turns news items into bite-sized chunks so that people can read them on the move. He was just 15 when he compiled the program, teaching himself to write computer code from books and tutorials.
Though the teenager’s family is the majority owner of the business, it has been helped by big name investors such as Stephen Fry and actor Ashton Kutcher. Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-Shing’s investment fund Horizon Ventures also helped to get the app off the ground with financial backing.
Though Yahoo will no longer market Summly, it’s believed to have paid the teenager around £20 million for it. The acquisition is in keeping with the vision of Yahoo’s CEO Marissa Mayer, hired from Google, to focus the search engine giant more on mobile services.
She has already has completed a number of so-called acqui-hires, acquisitions made in order to hire the talent behind a business, with D’Aloisio the youngest member to date.
The teenager, who lives in London with his lawyer mother and commodities trader father, will continue to study for his A-levels in the evening while he works in Yahoo’s London office during the day and where he’s expected to help integrate Summly with Yahoo’s growing library of other mobile apps.