Finder chief operating officer Jeremy Cabral reveals how he became rich

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EXCLUSIVE: Teenage computer whiz from the suburbs reveals how he turned a hobby into a fortune worth $30million – and it all started with a BOOK from his mum

  • Finder 34-year-old chief operating officer Jeremy Cabral is worth $30million
  • He has debuted on The Australian Financial Review’s Young List Rich for 2020 
  • Told Daily Mail Australia it started at 13 when his mother bought coding book 

A former teenage tech prodigy from an outer suburb is now worth $30million after his mother bought him a book on computer coding.

Jeremy Cabral has scraped into The Australian Financial Review’s Young Rich List of Australia’s 100 wealthiest entrepreneurs aged 40 and under.

With a ten per cent stake in financial comparison website Finder, the company’s 34-year-old chief operating officer and global head of publishing has debuted at No. 92 with an estimated net worth of $30million.

Speaking exclusively with Daily Mail Australia the entrepreneur, who grew up at Campbelltown in south-west Sydney, said his journey began as a boy when his mother Maria Cabral bought him a book on computer coding.

‘When I was 13 years old, I pestered my mother to buy me a book on HTML,’ Mr Cabral told Daily Mail Australia.

A former teenage tech nerd from an outer suburb is now worth $30million after his mother bought him a book on computer coding. Jeremy Cabral has scraped into The Australian Financial Review’s Young Rich List of Australia’s 100 wealthiest entrepreneurs aged 40 and under. He is pictured with his wife Patty Paredes, a fitness trainer and Pilates instructor

Mr Cabral on a computer as a child. He said said his journey began as a boy when his mother Maria Cabral bought him a book on computer coding, which led to him building websites by the time he was just 15

Mr Cabral on a computer as a child. He said said his journey began as a boy when his mother Maria Cabral bought him a book on computer coding, which led to him building websites by the time he was just 15 

‘That Christmas, I read the 1,000-plus page book front-to-back three times and didn’t know what to do with my new knowledge.’

Who wants to be a young millionaire?

Jeremy Cabral has given Daily Mail Australia his tips on being successful

Read lots of books – he reads 27 a year

‘Always have a student mindset. I have a never-ending thirst for learning

‘I’ve learned so much from business and personal development books

Accept running a business is hard

‘Invest in your mental health and wellness

‘It’s a constant struggle to grow a business and it’s going to require being the best version of yourself

Get a life coach 

‘Find a coach, spend time in reflection and meditation, do whatever it takes to be in peak mental performance

Allow mistakes

‘Don’t focus on perfecting any idea

‘Go live with it and focus on iterating and learning

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His passion for computers took another positive turn during his early teen years when his father John won an Amstrad computer at work during the late 1990s.

‘This got me into computers incredibly early, helping to build my own games like Mr Heli,’ Mr Cabral said.

‘Really fortunate in that I was able to have computers in my home thereafter with most computers since IBM 286.’

At 15, Mr Cabral was already building websites and even obtained an Australian Business Number while he was still at school.

‘I’d spent the summer before learning how to build websites for fun,’ he said.

‘No one I knew had a website back then. I used to hassle my mum to let me start my own business. 

‘From repairing lawn mowers to making and selling bath bombs, to building computers for my school teachers, I did it all. I had an ABN at 15.’

A gifted and talented program at Thomas Reddall High School during the days of dial-up internet also taught a young Mr Cabral how to master the internet.  

‘I was able to attend various extracurricular programs that taught me the basics of the internet using search engines that predated Google and how to build websites and then was inspired by this to teach myself in my own time,’ he said.

Mr Cabral joined Finder after contacting the company’s co-founder Fred Schebesta via Twitter after reading his column in a niche trade publication, Marketing Mag.

That was shortly before the site was launched in 2009.

After meeting at a conference, Mr Schebesta and Finder co-founder Frank Restuccia, who were friends at the elite Sydney Grammar School, agreed to let him join their company.

Mr Cabral (centre) with his mother (left) and father (right) after winning an award. His parents gave him all the tools he needed to become a computer whiz, including an Amstrad computer from his father John in the late 1990s. His mother Maria is pictured left

Mr Cabral (centre) with his mother (left) and father (right) after winning an award. His parents gave him all the tools he needed to become a computer whiz, including an Amstrad computer from his father John in the late 1990s. His mother Maria is pictured left

With a ten per cent stake in financial comparison website Finder, the company's 34-year-old chief operating officer and global head of publishing has debuted at No. 92 with an estimated net worth of $30million.

With a ten per cent stake in financial comparison website Finder, the company’s 34-year-old chief operating officer and global head of publishing has debuted at No. 92 with an estimated net worth of $30million.

‘Fred and Frank were wrapping up their previous company so I was asked to come on board to run the day to day of Finder,’ he said.

Mr Schebesta is on the Young Rich List for the second year running, making the cut at No. 26 with a fortune of $214million.

His co-founder Frank Restuccia, who is still with Finder, makes the AFR Rich List at No. 63 with wealth of $58million.

Unlike Finder’s co-founders, who grew up on the other side of Sydney, Mr Cabral didn’t go to Schoolies week and worked at the family business on the day he finished the Higher School Certificate 16 years ago.

Speaking exclusively with Daily Mail Australia the entrepreneur, who grew up at Campbelltown in south-west Sydney, said his journey began as a boy when his mother Maria Cabral bought him a book on computer coding

Speaking exclusively with Daily Mail Australia the entrepreneur, who grew up at Campbelltown in south-west Sydney, said his journey began as a boy when his mother Maria Cabral bought him a book on computer coding

‘I didn’t go to schoolies or anything like that. The day I finished my HSC I went to my family business office and started working,’ Mr Cabral said.

Finder has three entrants on the Rich List for a company which employs 450 people in more than 80 countries. 

Tech entrepreneurs dominated the list with Atlassian co-founder Scott Farquhar at No. 1 with a net worth of $17.8billion.

His co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes missed the cut-off because he this month turned 41 and Rich List entrants must be 40 or younger.

Retired soccer star Tim Cahill, who turns 41 in December, scraped in at 68 with a net worth of $52million, making this his last turn on the elite youth ranking.

At 15, Mr Cabral was already building websites and even obtained an Australian Business Number while he was still at school. He is pictured with his six-month-old twin daughters Celine and Camille

At 15, Mr Cabral was already building websites and even obtained an Australian Business Number while he was still at school. He is pictured with his six-month-old twin daughters Celine and Camille

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