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Shopify CEO Tobi Lutke, centre and wearing a hat, is celebrated as he rings the New York Stock Exchange opening bell on May 21, 2015.Richard Drew/The Associated Press

While Shopify Inc. doesn't make any money yet, its early shareholders have made a huge paper gain on its highly successful initial public offering.

The stock, which was priced at $17 (all figures in U.S.) a share in the prospectus, rocketed up to $28.74 a share on the New York Stock Exchange before settling down to around $26 – a 33-per-cent improvement over the prospectus price.

The single biggest individual beneficiary was Tobias Lütke, Shopify's founder and chief executive officer. His stake in the company is worth about $255.7-million. That assumes a stock price of $25.42 (the price at time of press) and accounts for his 14.4-per-cent stake and factors in the roughly 1.1 million share options he holds . Not bad for a 34-year-old who founded the company only 11 years ago.

Fifty-six-year-old chief financial officer Russell Jones's holdings in Shopify are worth around $25.8-million. He owns 1 per cent of the company and about 600,000 options.

Chief design officer Daniel Weinand – who before joining Shopify in 2005 was a freelance Web designer – holds stock and options now worth around $44.3-million.

Tobias Lütke isn't the youngest Shopify millionaire today. That honour belongs to 28-year-old Brittany Forsyth, who has been vice-president of human relations since 2010. She owns 61,958 shares, giving her stake a market value of $1,574,972.

Meanwhile, the shares of Canadian private equity company Georgian Partners Inc., which total around 3.6 million or a 5.5-per-cent stake, are worth $93-million. OMERS Ventures Management Inc. is the other big Canadian institutional shareholder winner. Its 6-per-cent stake of approximately four million shares is worth about $102.6-million.

Follow Niall McGee on Twitter: @niallcmcgeeOpens in a new window

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