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8 start-ups that have astonishing valuations

March 28, 2014 09:24 IST

8 start-ups that beat decades old companies in valuations

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Facebook recently paid $2 billion to acquire Oculus VR, a maker of virtual reality goggles. The acquisition of the start up took Wall Street and technology observers by surprise. These financial experts feel that it’s a hefty price for a company with no real revenue and untested technology.

Oculus is not an isolated case; experts had raised similar doubts on the valuations of Twitter when it was listed.

There’s no denying that technology start ups are flavour of the season but only time will tell how many of these will sustain the promised growth.

Let’s take a look at some of the most valuable start ups in the world.

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Image: Joe Cada, a poker professional, celebrates with bundles of cash after winning $8.5 million in prize money.
Photographs: Steve Marcus/Reuters
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Airbnb

Valuation: $10 billion

Airbnb is a website for people to rent out lodging, including private rooms, entire apartments, castles, boats, manors, tree houses, tipis, igloos, private islands and other properties. It has over 500,000 listings in 192 countries, according to Wikipedia.

The company was founded in 2008. The name is shortened for AirBed & Breakfast

The co-founders include CEO Brian Chesky (image on the left), Joe Gebbia (Chief Product Officer) and Nathan Blecharczyk (CTO)

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Image: Screen shot of Airbnb app.
Photographs: Courtesy, Airbnb
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8 start-ups that beat decades old companies in valuations

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Drop Box

Valuation: $10 billion

Dropbox allows you to upload files on their servers that can be accessed from computers and mobile devices. It’s a file hosting service that offers cloud storage, file synchronisation, and client software.

The company was founded in 2007 by Drew Houston (image on the left) and Arash Ferdowsi. The company has over 200 million users worldwide.

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Image: Screenshot of Dropbox app for smartphones.
Photographs: Courtesy, Dropbox

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Palantir

Valuation: $9 billion

Palantir is a company that has ability to analyse large quantity of data for various purposes. For example, the company works with intelligence agencies to fight terrorism. It also helps banks and financial companies to detect frauds.

The company was founded in 2004 by a handful of PayPal alumni and Stanford computer scientists including Peter Thiel (photo on the left), Joe Lonsdale, Alex Karp, Stephen Cohen, and Nathan Gettings.

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Image: An illustration picture shows a projection of binary code on a man holding a laptop.
Photographs: Kacper Pempel/Reuters

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8 start-ups that beat decades old companies in valuations

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SpaceX

Valuation: $4.8 billion

SpaceX designs, manufactures and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft. The company was founded in 2002 to revolutionise space technology, with the ultimate goal of enabling people to live on other planets.

The company is founded by Elon Musk (picture on the left) in 2002. He is also credited with companies such as PayPal and tesla Motors.

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Image: SpaceX rocket taking off to deliver cargo to International Space Station.
Photographs: Courtesy, SpaceX
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Pinterest

Valuation: $3.8 billion

Pinterest is a social networking site. Pinterest acts as a personalised media platform, where a user can browse content uploaded by other users on the main page.

A user can create and share their collections and use it to plan a trip, organise events or just save it for personal use.

The company is founded by Paul Sciarra (picture on the left), Evan Sharp, and Ben Silbermann in 2010.

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Photographs: Courtesy, Pinterest

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Uber

Valuation: $3.8 billion

Uber is a mobile app that connects passengers with drivers of vehicles for hire. The company arranges pickups in dozens of cities around the world. Bookings can also be done by sending an SMS. Once booked, customer can track their cars using the mobile app.

Uber was founded as UberCab by Garrett Camp (picture on the left), and Travis Kalanick in 2009

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Photographs: Courtesy, Pinterest

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Jawbone

Valuation: $3.3 billion

Jawbone is a technology company that sells portable audio devices and also wearable technologies. Some of its high popular and innovative products include Jambox and Big Jambox wireless speakers, the Jawbone Era and Icon Bluetooth headsets.

Jawbone owns over 230 patents, according to Wikipedia.

It also has a product called UP, which in an activity tracker. UP allows users to track their sleep, eating habits, and daily activity including steps taken and calories burned. It consists of a flexible rubber-coated wristband that relays data to iPhone and Android devices.

The company, initially called as Aliph, is founded by Alexander Asseily (picture on the left) and Hosain Rahman in 2006.

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Photographs: Courtesy, Pinterest

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Square

Valuation: $3.3 billion

If you thought instant payment to a vendor using your phone is the technology of the future, the future is already here than to Square.

Square allows individuals and merchants in the United States, Canada, and Japan to accept debit and credit cards on their iOS or Android devices.

Jack Dorsey (picture on the left) and Jim McKelvey founded the company in 2009.


Photographs: Courtesy, Pinterest

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