Immigrants Rule the Billion-Dollar Startup Club

Immigrants Rule the Billion-Dollar Startup Club


CREDIT: Getty Images

Uber, Stripe, and Instacart are among the high-profile, immigrant-founded unicorns.


What do Uber, Instacart, and Stripe have in common? Aside from valuations in excess of $1 billion, the three startups have immigrant founders. Uber co-founder Garrett Camp is from Canada, AppDynamics’s Jyoti Bansal is from India, and Stripe was co-founded by the Irish brothers John and Patrick Collison.

These founders born outside the United States are not an exception to the rule, but the rule itself, confirms a study by Arlington, Virginia-based nonpartisan think tank National Foundation for American Policy.

More than half of the highest-valued startups in the U.S.–44 startups out of 87 meeting the valuation–were founded by immigrants, according to a Wall Street Journal article about the study.

The statistic isn’t really news. Back when there were only 54 U.S. unicorns, it was reported that roughly half had immigrant founders. But the latest findings come at a time when Republican presidential nomination front runner Donald Trump is talking about ending the H-1B visa program many of these entrepreneurs have relied on.

Study author Stuart Anderson told The Wall Street Journal that what would benefit the U.S. economy is greater ease in securing the visas, not a more complicated and arduous process.

“Who is going to invest in a company if the founder of the company may not be able to stay in the U.S.?” he told the Journal.

A few countries came out on the top of the list as the most common places of origin for immigrant founders. Here are the top five.

  • India: 14 founders (Instacart, Zenefits, AppDynamics)
  • Canada: 8 founders (Uber, Slack, Moderna Therapeutics)
  • United Kingdom: 8 founders (FanDuel, Jawbone, MuleSoft)
  • Israel: 7 founders (WeWork, Gusto, Tango)
  • Germany: 4 founders (ZocDoc, Oscar Health Insurance, Palantir Technologies)



October 13, 2016 / by / in , , ,

Leave a Reply

Show Buttons
Hide Buttons

IMPORTANT MESSAGE: is a website owned and operated by Scooblr, Inc. By accessing this website and any pages thereof, you agree to be bound by the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy, as amended from time to time. Scooblr, Inc. does not verify or assure that information provided by any company offering services is accurate or complete or that the valuation is appropriate. Neither Scooblr nor any of its directors, officers, employees, representatives, affiliates or agents shall have any liability whatsoever arising, for any error or incompleteness of fact or opinion in, or lack of care in the preparation or publication, of the materials posted on this website. Scooblr does not give advice, provide analysis or recommendations regarding any offering, service posted on the website. The information on this website does not constitute an offer of, or the solicitation of an offer to buy or subscribe for, any services to any person in any jurisdiction to whom or in which such offer or solicitation is unlawful.