Kevin Systrom

Courtesy of Instagram
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Snap-happy Systrom has just begun to make good on Mark Zuckerberg’s $1 billion bet on the company in 2012, rolling out sponsored ads for the first time in November 2013. Since the acquisition—which paved the way for Facebook’s fatter bids for upstarts like WhatsApp ($19 billion), Oculus Rift ($2 billion) and SnapChat ($3 billion)—the mobile photo platform has ballooned about 10x in both size and audience, now having more than 200 million active monthly users and some 150 employees. In scaling one of the world’s most engrossing and consistently downloaded apps, Systrom has rolled out fresh features such as private messaging with Instagram Direct, new creative tools for photo-editing, and Hyperlapse, a standalone app for shooting steady-cam time-lapse video, over the past year. He also scaled his career up a few notches when he was named to the Wal-Mart board last month.