The Former Whiz Kid Behind Tech Billionaires’ Plan to Build Utopian City – DIGIWIZ CENTRAL

The Former Whiz Kid Behind Tech Billionaires’ Plan to Build Utopian City

Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/Getty

The mastermind behind a mysterious plan to build a new city in California is a former Goldman Sachs wunderkind who quoted Ayn Rand, revered Peter Thiel, and wowed the finance industry before abruptly dropping out of the spotlight to secretly recruit billionaire investors.

For six years, a company called Flannery Associates has been buying up thousands of acres of land in rural Solano County in hopes of turning it into a walkable metropolis outside San Francisco. While the company was shrouded in mystery, The New York Times unveiled its top financial backers last week, among them venture capitalists Michael Moritz and Marc Andreessen, LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman, Stripe co-founders Patrick and John Collison, and Emerson Collective founder Laurene Powell Jobs. The driving force behind this titan-backed utopia, according to the Times, is Jan Sramek.

Despite the secrecy of his latest venture, Sramek, 36, didn’t always shy from the limelight. In 2009, at age 22, he was named Financial News’ youngest ever “Rising Star”—similar to a Forbes 30 Under 30, but for the finance sector. A glowing profile of Sramek on the website, which was picked up by outlets from The Guardian to New York magazine, boasted that on top of working at Goldman Sachs, Sramek also trained for marathons, founded three startups, never smoked and rarely drank. Business Insider, in a piece naming Sramek one of their inaugural “Top Three Traders Under 30,” reported that “informed sources suggest that Sramek’s mentors include several of London’s most powerful hedge fund managers who are clearly grooming him for the very top.”

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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