Forbes posts its updated list of the world’s richest billionaires, revealing the net worth of Gabe Newell, who is worth more than Oprah Winfrey and Donald Trump.
Despite moving away from traditional game development, Valve is still one of the most successful video game companies around. Thanks to the massive success of its Steam digital platform and other ventures, Valve continues to post huge profits, even while experimenting with risky new technological ventures like virtual reality. As a result of this success, Valve’s president, Gabe Newell, is now one of the richest people in the world.
As reported by Forbes, Gabe Newell’s net worth is a whopping $4.1 billion, ranking him #134 on the publication’s list of billionaires. To put this into perspective, this means Gabe Newell’s reported net worth eclipses that of some of the most notable billionaires of our time, including the likes of Oprah Winfrey and even president-elect of the United States, Donald Trump, who come in at #239 and #156 respectively.
The last time Forbes released its list of billionaires, Newell was ranked much lower, meaning Valve has become increasingly lucrative, despite some disappointments like the underwhelming Steam Boxes and the lack of new software. Valve’s continued success is good news for company executives like Gabe Newell and those that enjoy its Steam services, but for those wanting to see new games, it could be problematic.
With Valve generating so much cash from Steam and other areas, there doesn’t seem to be much incentive for Valve to pursue game development in any serious capacity moving forward. There are a number of Valve franchises that have apparently been abandoned, including Half-Life, Team Fortress, Left 4 Dead, and main series Portal games. A running gag on the Internet claims that “Valve can’t count to three” because its major franchises seem to stop at the second game, and even though there have been rumors of games like Left 4 Dead 3 in the past, it seems as though Valve’s resources are more effectively spent elsewhere.
Fans may want to see Half-Life 3, or any conclusion to the cliffhanger from Half-Life 2: Episode Two, but with Valve making ridiculous sums of money elsewhere, it doesn’t seem likely to reinvest its funds into AAA game development. Of course, Valve could always have a change of heart, and it would be interesting to learn if a return to serious game development is in the cards for the company. Perhaps if someone asks Newell that question in his upcoming Reddit AMA, we’ll have answers sooner rather than later.