Fabian Thylmann is a German entrepreneur and former CEO of the adult entertainment company MindGeek, which owns some of the world’s largest pornographic websites such as Pornhub, YouPorn, and RedTube.

Thylmann’s rise to fame and fortune has been nothing short of controversial, with his vast wealth and business dealings often drawing scrutiny from the public and media alike.

In this article, we’ll delve into the details of Fabian Thylmann’s net worth, exploring how he amassed his fortune and examining his impact on the adult entertainment industry.

What Is Fabian Thylmann’s Net Worth?

Net Worth:$300 Million
Date of Birth:Jun 5, 1978 (44 years old)
Place of Birth:Düsseldorf, Germany
Profession:Angel investor, entrepreneur

German-born entrepreneur, software engineer, and investor Fabian Thylmann have a $300 million fortune. Fabian Thylmann became wealthy as the creator and former CEO of Manwin, currently known as MindGeek, a conglomerate of adult website brands. After developing groundbreaking affiliate monitoring software, Fabian rose to the top of the porn industry.

Fabian rolled up hundreds of adult brands after selling his part in the program, which is called NATS and is still widely used today. Over time, this merger grew into the greatest conglomeration of adult websites ever.

Fabian faced tax evasion allegations in 2013 when he sold his stake in Manwin to top management for $100 million. This led to a rebranding effort, which resulted in the current name, MindGeek. MindGeek remains a major player in the online business world. Its current portfolio of brands includes Brazzers, RedTube, YouPorn, Xtube, Reality Kings, and Pornhub.

No one knows for sure how many people visit these sites every month, although estimates put the number in the tens of billions. Thylmann, who was formerly the most influential person in the adult business, is said to now lead a fairly ordinary life with his wife and two children. He has since become an angel investor based in Belgium, where he also manages an incubator for fledgling businesses.

Fabian Thylmann’s Journey: From Programmer to Innovator

Fabian Thylmann's Journey: From Programmer to Innovator

The German city of Dusseldorf is the place where Fabian Thylmann’s birth took place on June 5th, 1978. After learning to code at the tender age of 17, he found himself chatting online with the proprietors of adult sites.

Adult website owners frequently complained about not getting compensated for referrals who went on to sign up for premium accounts or buy products. So, sometime in the late ’90s, Fabian set out to fix that.

Next-generation Affiliate Tracking Software (NATS) was the software he developed to address the problem. Finally, NATS made it possible for businesses to know exactly when their affiliate ads were clicked and reward them accordingly.

When it was first introduced, it was a game-changer, especially for adult sites that had been shut out of the standard online display advertising business and were in dire need of a way to determine which advertising partners should be compensated for driving conversions (such as purchases or subscription sign-ups).

Thylmann’s Acquisitions: From NATS to Xtube

Thylmann's Acquisitions: From NATS to Xtube

Fabian received a bonus for his work on behalf of NATS. And the software’s backend admin offered him a “God-view” of the whole adult website commerce business, which is saying something. He could tell which sites were profitable, how much money they were producing, and what ads were driving actual sales. He used this information to justify purchasing an adult website for himself. His first major purchase was the German website PrivatAmateure.

Thylmann divested himself of his holdings in the holding corporation that controlled NATS in 2006. He continued his buying frenzy after getting a raise, but this time his purchases were much more substantial. During this time, he made a number of notable purchases, the most notable being Xtube.

In Montreal, Canada, two entrepreneurs named Stephane Manos and Ouissam Youssef were running their own adult empire with the two crown jewel properties Brazzers and Pornhub while Thlymann was busy rolling up the adult internet ecosystem. The business they ran was called “Mansef,” a combination of the surnames that they had coined.

Manwin’s Mega Acquisitions: From Playboy to RedTube

Manwin's Mega Acquisitions: From Playboy to RedTube

With Brazzers, Pornhub.com was purchased by Thylmann for $140 million in March 2010. Thylmann rebranded the company from Mansef to Manwin after the acquisition.

About a hundred investors, including Clobeck Capital, Fortress Investment Group, Cornell University, and JP Morgan, helped Manwin fund approximately $360 million in 2011. With their newly replenished funds, Fabian and Manwin went on another high-octane buying trip for adult businesses.

Manwin apparently paid a huge sum of money (though the exact sum was never revealed) to acquire the digital rights to Playboy Enterprises in November of 2011. Manwin was granted a 15-year license to manage Playboy’s digital properties, including Playboy.com, Playboy TV, and Playboy Plus.

This meant that users who went to Playboy.com in search of the newest Playmate instead encountered highly NSFW advertisements designed to direct them to extreme pay-to-view porn sites. Playboy paid “significantly” to reclaim ownership of Playboy.com in 2014. Regardless of its new moniker, MindGeek, Manwin is still in charge of Playboy TV and the Playboy Plus subscription service as of this writing.

Manwin purchased Digital Playground’s assets in January 2012. The business purchased Reality Kings in April 2012. The business bought Babes.com in June 2012.

RedTube was bought by Man win in July 2013.

Thylmann’s Arrest: Tax Evasion Charges

Thylmann's Arrest: Tax Evasion Charges

Fabian Thylmann was arrested in December 2012 on charges of tax evasion. He was arrested in Belgium and extradited to Germany on charges of evading taxes on the proceeds of his adult entertainment enterprise.

German authorities said that Fabian made $100 million every year from his international business but paid little in taxes because he moved much of his money through offshore “shell” firms in tax havens such as Cyprus and Curaca.

He insisted he had done nothing wrong and vowed to challenge the tax assessment. As the issue broke, Fabian made a deal to sell his shares of Manwin to high-ranking company personnel for $100 million. All charges were dropped in exchange for a 5 million Euro fine to cover back taxes and penalties.

MindGeek: The Adult Industry Giant

MindGeek: The Adult Industry Giant

Manwin renamed as MindGeek after its founder and CEO sold the company to its senior management for $100 million.

Youporn.com, Twistys, RedTube Brazzers, Pornhub.com, WebCams.com, and many others are all owned by MindGeek today, making them some of the largest adult websites in the world. On its own, Pornhaub attracts 10 million unique visitors per month.

Although MindGeek is officially registered in Luxembourg, its operations are headquartered in Toronto, Ontario. Almost 1,400 people are employed by the company’s many properties and subsidiaries around the world. During his zenith, Fabian Thylmann’s sites attracted over 16 billion monthly visitors and generated over $400 million annually.

Fabian is the proprietor of the Bootshaus nightclub in Cologne. The Live Entertainment Awards presented their “Club of the Year” award to Bootshaus in June 2021. The picture of Fabian you see here was taken at Boosthaus on the night he and his colleagues won the prize.


Fabian Thylmann is a German entrepreneur and former CEO of MindGeek, a company that owns some of the world’s largest pornographic websites, such as Pornhub, YouPorn, and RedTube.

Thylmann’s net worth is estimated to be $300 million. He became wealthy by creating the groundbreaking affiliate monitoring software, NATS, which he used to roll up hundreds of adult brands to create the largest conglomeration of adult websites.

Thylmann faced tax evasion allegations in 2013 when he sold his stake in Manwin, leading to a rebranding effort that resulted in the current name, MindGeek. Today, Thylmann is an angel investor based in Belgium, where he also manages an incubator for fledgling businesses.

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