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Jeff Bezos, 46
Chairman, founder, Amazon.com
No. of Angel Investments: 18
Companies funded (a sampling): 37signals, Google, Linden Lab, Social Gaming Network, Twitter
The founder of online retail giant Amazon.com invested in the young entrepreneurs Larry Page and Sergey Brin in Google’s early days. It was obviously a good call: The company is now the single most powerful engine of wealth creation in Silicon Valley. Bezos didn’t respond to an e-mail, but he made the investment in the search giant around the same time as Sun Microsystems co-founder Andy Bechtolsheim, who has said that his Google stake returned more than $1 billion. Bezos’ best shot at reprising a return on that scale may be his investment in Twitter.