These 9 U.S. Universities Graduate the Most Billion-Dollar Company Founders

Saturday, September 16, 2017

America is home to some of the world’s most entrepreneurial institutions of higher education. Built upon top-notch reputations and the curriculums to back them up, the best colleges and universities in the home of the free and the land of the brave churn out some of today’s most profitable businesses, and you can bet there’s no shortage of so-called “Unicorn League” ventures among them.

Unicorn companies are privately held enterprises that are valued at a worth of $1 billion or higher. While some may not have heard of the relatively new and buzzy term Unicorn League, many will surely recognize the biggest names to headline this echelon in recent years, Airbnb, Lyft, SpaceX and Uber among them, to name just a few.

Situated in the heart of Northern California’s tech-startup teeming Silicon Valley, Stanford University, according to a recent analysis completed by a British cloud accounting company by the name of Sage Software, has graduated the highest number of alumni who went on to found astronomically successful unicorn businesses. These include LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman; Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin; Netflix founder Reed Hastings and WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton. (WhatsApp, you may recall, was acquired by Facebook for the tidy sum of $19 billion in 2014.)

Harvard University, the crown jewel of the Ivy League, meanwhile, boasts the second most unicorn company founder graduates among U.S. higher education institutions, also reports Sage. Among its most successful founder alumni are Airbnb co-founder Nathan Blecharczyk, Hulu founder Jason Kilar and Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg. (Technically, “Zuck” did not graduate, although he did receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the school earlier this year).

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