Becoming a unicorn (as told by the Irish companies who achieved the fabled status)

Workhuman has joined a highly select group of just four Irish-founded unicorns. The Currency spoke to the other three – Stripe, CarTrawler and Intercom – to see how they did it and what advice they would give to budding entrepreneurs.

26th Jun, 2020 - 5 min read

In a November 2013 blogpost, venture capitalist, Aileen Lee coined the term “unicorn” to refer to internet-based privately held companies worth more than $1 billion.

Lee, the founder of Cowboy Ventures and an alumnus of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, concluded there were 39 members of the Unicorn Club.

She looked at what these companies had in common and found that just 0.07 per cent of internet-based start-ups made it to unicorn status.

“Takeaway: it’s really hard, and highly unlikely, to build or invest in a billion-dollar company,” she concluded.

“The tech news may make it seem like there’s a winner being born...

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