How they made their pile: Michael & Xochi birch - Co-founders of Bebo

- Who are they?

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

According to their Bebo profiles, she's 36, has 195 friends and drinks wine; he's 37, loves Guinness and is happiest writing code. Bebo, of which they own a significant chunk, was sold to AOL in March for $850m.

- How did they make their millions?

Californian Xochi and British-born Michael met as computer programmers at an insurance firm, becoming self-employed to focus on the internet. Babysittingcircle and Lemonlink both tanked. They launched Ringo, their first social network, in 2003, and refined the idea two years later with Bebo. It now claims 40 million users a month wordwide, and is a close third after Facebook and MySpace in the global social networking stakes.

- The secret of their success?

Bebo captures the imagination of the young with features such as KateModern, an interactive drama that attracts 7 million viewers. The site has been linked with everything from suicide cults to teenage house-trashing parties, but its demographic is still a tempting one for advertisers.

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