Indians top founders of US venture-funded firmsDecember 23rd, 2011 - 12:38 pm ICT by IANS
Washington, Dec 23 (IANS) Immigrants, with the largest number coming from India, have started nearly half of America’s top 50 venture-funded companies in the US creating about 150 jobs each, according to a new report.
They are also key members of management or product development teams in almost 75 percent of the country’s leading cutting-edge companies, according to a report released by the National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP).
India was followed by Israel, Canada, Iran and New Zealand as the top countries of origin for an immigrant founder. Other founders and co-founders were born in Italy, South Africa, Greece, Norway, Germany, Britain, Singapore, Switzerland and France.
“Immigrants are increasingly important in driving growth and innovation in America, as evidenced by the role played by foreign-born founders and key personnel in the nation’s breakthrough companies,” said Stuart Anderson, the NFAP executive director and report’s author.
The report, “Immigrant Founders and Key Personnel in America’s 50 Top Venture-Funded Companies”, found that 46 percent, or 23 out of 50, of the country’s top venture-funded companies had at least one immigrant founder.
A 2006 study conducted with the National Venture Capital Association identified an immigrant founder in 1 in 4, or 25 percent, of publicly traded venture-backed companies created between 1990 and 2005.
The study found 37 of the top 50 companies, or 74 percent, had at least one immigrant helping the company grow and innovate by filling a key management or product development position.
Chief technology officer, CEO and vice president of engineering are the most common positions held by immigrants in the top 50 venture-backed companies.
If there is one overarching theme among these top 50 venture-backed companies it is how combining foreign-born and native-born talent creates a win-win situation that create jobs and important innovations in America, the report said.
However, a second study released by NFAP, “America’s Tradition of Rewarding Talent”, suggests, “US immigration policy does not look kindly on foreign nationals who seek to create businesses in America”.
Noting that American history is fuelled by the story of entrepreneurs, the study concludes that the current policy “of rewarding cash but not talent is a rejection of America’s heritage as a nation of immigrants and a nation of entrepreneurs”.
(Arun Kumar can be contacted at email@example.com)
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