Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), a leading American venture capital company, which made its early bets on companies such as Amazon, Google and Twitter among its vast portfolio, has stressed how immigration is important for job creation in the American technology sector. The Internet Trends 2017 report of KPCB authored by Mary Meeker also provided data points on the importance of immigration for the technology sector in the US.
It stated how more than 50% of most highly valued private technology companies with valuation of more than $1 billion in the US were founded by first generation immigrants creating more than 48,000 jobs. It provides examples of Indian immigrants such as Apoorva Mehta of Instacart, K R Sridhar of Bloom Energy, Laks Srini of Zenefits, Ragy Thomas of Sprinklr, Dhiraj Rajaram of Mu Sigma and Jay Chaudhry of Zscaler.
The report states that 60% of most highly valued tech companies in US were founded by first or second generations Americans which has provided employment for 1.5 million people. The report has cited the example of Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple who was a second generation Syrian or the Sergey Brin of Google who is a first generation Russian. In the case of Amazon, founder Jeff Bezos is a second generation Cuban. In Facebook, one of the co-founder, Edurado Saverin is a first generation Brazilian.
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It also makes a mention of Cognizant, the Nasdaq listed IT services company with a large employee base in India, whose founders – Francisco D’Souza and Kumar Mahadeva are of Indian and Sri Lankan origin respectively.
The VC company’s report comes in the backdrop of the various protectionist measures adopted by the current US administration under President Donald Trump. The administration has now made it more cumbersome for Indian IT companies to apply for the H-1B visas while also enhancing the fee structure.