Canva co-founder Melanie Perkins wants to give away 30 per cent of wealth, firm bigger than Telstra


Canva now bigger than Telstra with a market worth of more than $50BILLION – as glamorous founders reveal what they’ll do with their incredible wealth

  • Graphic design software group Canva worth $54 billion now bigger than Telstra 
  • Co-founders Melanie Perkins and Cliff Obrecht are also in long-term relationship
  • Despite success, they want to give 20 per cent of wealth to charitable causes 










Australian software juggernaut Canva is now worth more than Telstra and its young billionaire founders want to give away their fortune to the needy.

Melanie Perkins, 34, and Cliff Obrecht, 35, started a multi-billion business from a Perth living room a little more than a decade ago, during the early days of their long-term relationship.

Canva now has a market capitalisation – the total value of all its shares – of AU$54 billion, making it even more valuable than telecom giant Telstra’s AU$47 billion.

Graphic design software juggernaut Canva is now worth more than Telstra as its young billionaire founders reveal they want to give away their fortune to the needy. Melanie Perkins, 34, and Cliff Obrecht, 35, famously started a multi-billion business from a Perth living room a little more than a decade ago, during the earlier days of their long-term relationship

Graphic design software juggernaut Canva is now worth more than Telstra as its young billionaire founders reveal they want to give away their fortune to the needy. Melanie Perkins, 34, and Cliff Obrecht, 35, famously started a multi-billion business from a Perth living room a little more than a decade ago, during the earlier days of their long-term relationship

The value of their company has surged, following a successful capital raising from investors that added $273 million to their worth.

Despite this success, the glamorous co-founders in their thirties have now pledged to give away 30 per cent of their fortune, with a promise of giving the ‘vast majority’ of their stakes in the company to their Canva Foundation charity.

Ms Perkins is now engaged to the man she started a business empire with 11 years ago from the living room of her mother’s Perth house.

To her, getting rich for the sake of it was empty.

‘If the whole thing was about building wealth that would be the most uninspiring thing I could possible imagine,’ she told the American Forbes finance website.

Australia’s wealthiest woman under 40 is also uncomfortable with the idea of being ultra-rich, even if she created the money rather than inheriting it.

Despite this success, the glamorous co-founders in their thirties have now pledged to give away 30 per cent of their fortune, with a promise of giving the 'vast majority' of their stakes to their Canva Foundation charity

Despite this success, the glamorous co-founders in their thirties have now pledged to give away 30 per cent of their fortune, with a promise of giving the ‘vast majority’ of their stakes to their Canva Foundation charity

To Ms Perkins, getting rich for the sake of it was empty

To Ms Perkins, getting rich for the sake of it was empty

‘It has felt strange when people refer to us as ‘billionaires’ as it has never felt like our money, we’ve always felt that we’re purely custodians of it,’ Ms Perkins said in a blog post.

Last year, with her fiancé, she came second on the Australian Financial Review’s Young Rich List with an estimated personal worth of $3.4billion.

They were second only to Atlassian co-founder Scott Farquhar, who only qualified because he was still 40 at the time.

Canva’s founders look set to top the AFR’s elite youth list in late 2021 as the pandemic keeps inflating the value of tech companies like hers.

Mr Farquhar and the other Atlassian co-creator, Mike Cannon-Brookes, will also be a little too old to qualify for the who’s-who list of uber-wealthy billionaires aged 40 or younger.

Last year with her fiancé, she came second on The Australian Financial Review's Young Rich List with an estimated personal worth of $3.4billion, second only to Atlassian co-founder Scott Farquhar who only qualified because he was still 40 at the time

Last year with her fiancé, she came second on The Australian Financial Review’s Young Rich List with an estimated personal worth of $3.4billion, second only to Atlassian co-founder Scott Farquhar who only qualified because he was still 40 at the time

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