The founder of the now-defunct online service Megaupload.com has many aliases, such as Kim Tim Jim Vestor and Kimble, but he is mostly known as Kim Dotcom. His company was a file hosting business that let users share files on the internet. Kim was fined hundreds of millions of dollars because of this. As of 2022, Kim Dotcom has an estimated net worth of $10 million.
His real name is Kim Schmitz, and he is from Kiel, Germany. He was born on January 21, 1974 and is half Finnish and German. In 2005, Kim legally changed his last name to Dotcom as a tribute to the industry that made him wealthy.
Schmitz is a self-taught programmer and learned how to hack at an early age. He gained notoriety as a teen after claiming to have gotten through the security systems of NASA, the Pentagon, and Citibank by using the nickname Kimble.
Then, he opened an online bulletin board system that he called “House of Coolness”, it was a community where people shared information about hacking and software. In 1994, he was arrested but was given a two-year suspended sentence as a minor.
Kim continued to conduct shady internet business and moved out of Germany to avoid the authorities. One of the places he relocated to, Hong Kong, was where he established Megaupload.com in 2005.
It became a widely used platform and at its peak Dotcom earned $150,000 per day. He moved to New Zealand, where he lived a luxury life with private jets, supercars, yachts, and a $25 million mansion. He also became the number one player in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.
Megaupload is said to have caused over $500 million in losses to the entertainment sector. The US government had its eyes on the internet entrepreneur and seized his operations in 2012.
Kim Dotcom is currently facing a long prison sentence for running megaupload.com. He might also be ordered to refund over $175 million in ill-gotten earnings if convicted.
In 2014, the German hacker stated that he was officially broke. His rise and fall was featured in a 2017 documentary titled Kim Dotcom: Caught on the Web. Even with this, he still made some profitable endeavors.
He participated in white hat hacking activities and funded several music ventures. Kim is also a bit crypto enthusiast, controversially he supports Bitcoin Cash and believes it will overtake Bitcoin in the future. In 2019, he even expressed his desire to create his own coin, but it was canceled.
Net Worth and Earnings
When he announced that he was broke, Kim clarified that the government took the majority of his wealth. He’s also spent huge money on lawyers to defend himself, and he’s moved any remaining assets out of his name to avoid prosecution. What’s left of his previously massive fortune is only $10 million, which can still drop in the coming years.
Although Megaupload failed, Kim is still in the file-sharing business. He started a new file-sharing and cloud hosting business called Mega Limited in 2013.
In 2009, Dotcom married former Philippine model Mona Verga. The couple raised twin daughters before splitting up in 2014. In 2018, the web mogul tied the knot with New Zealand native Elizabeth Donnelly. The couple left their lavish mansion to settle in Wyuna Preserve, Queenstown.