Investments, Startups

Who Are Making it Big: Top 10 Startups with Highest Valuations

21st Century is all about the emergence of promising startups across the globe. While there are a number of startups raising millions from VCs and Angels everyday, the area of focus of this article remains only those top 10 most valuable startups irrespective of categories, who have made it big within a short span of time.

The above image shows top 10 startups out of the 73 valuable startups which have been listed on the WSJ website. Let’s look at these startups in detail, considering their evaluation on the basis of their growth, investments and present value in the market.


xiaomi founders

Shown Above: Xiaomi Founders – Image Source: The Next Web

Xiaomi founded in 2010, is a Chinese company that designs, develops and sells smartphones, mobile apps and consumer electronics. It has till date made 10 investments in 10 companies and raised $1.4 billion in 5 rounds from 6 investors namely, Digital Sky Technologies, GIC, QiMing Venture Partners, HOPU Investment Management Company, DST Global and Morningside Group.

Latest funding that Xiaomi secured was in December 2014, of $1.1 billion from investors like Digital Sky Technologies, GIC, HOPU Investment Management Company and DST Global.


uber founder

Shown Above: Travis Kalanick, CEO and Co-Founder, Uber – Image Source:

Uber founded in 2009, is a San-Francisco based technology startup which provides convenient transportation at different prices in cities around the world. It functions as a mobile app which connects passengers with drivers for hire. It has received a total funding of $5.9 billion in 10 rounds from 39 investors namely: Goldman Sachs, Baidu, New Enterprise Associates, Lone Pine Capital, Valiant Capital Partners, Qatar Investment Authority, Menlo Ventures, Google Ventures and others.

The latest funding Uber raised was, a Series E funding of $1 billion in February 2015 in two transactions from New Enterprise Associates, Lone Pine Capital, Valiant Capital Partners and Qatar Investment Authority.


Peter Thiel, managing partner, Founders Fund

Shown Above: Peter Thiel, Co-Founder, Palantir – Image Source: thenextweb

Palantir founded in 2004, is a US based technology company that offers a suite of software applications for integrating, visualizing and analyzing information. It has received a total funding of $1000 million in 15 rounds from 10 investors namely, EquityZen, Reed Elsevier Ventures, Founders Fund, In-Q-Tel, 137 Ventures, Ulu Ventures, Glynn Capital Management, etc. And has acquired FT Technologies, Propeller, Poptip and Voicegem.

The latest round of funding, it secured was $50 million in December 2014.



Shown Above: Elon Musk, CEO and CTO, SpaceX – Image Caption: aviationweek

SpaceX founded in 2002, is a US based Space Exploration Technology startup. It designs, manufactures and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft. Till date it has secured $1.2 billion in 7 rounds from 10 investors namely: Valor Equity Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ), Founders Fund, Fidelity Investments, Google, Rothenberg Ventures, Musket Research Associates and others.

The latest funding it secured was $1 billion Series E in January 2015, from investors Google and Fidelity.


Flipart founders

Shown Above: Flipkart Founders – Image Source: techstory

Founded in 2007, Flipkart is an India-based online shopping destination. Till date, it has received a total funding of $2.5 billion in 11 rounds from 17 investors namely, Digital Sky Technologies, Qatar Investment Authority, T.Rowe Price, Steadview Capital, Iconiq Capital, Baillie Gifford, GIC and others. Flipkart has also acquired 3 companies namely Myntra, and weRead.

In its latest series of funding in December 2014, it secured $700 million  from investors Digital Sky Technologies, Qatar Investment Authority, T.Rowe Price, Steadview Capital and others. In the same round, it secured $150 million from Qatar Investment Authority alone.


airbnb dounders

Shown Above: Airbnb Founders – Image Source:

Founded in 2008 and based in US, Airbnb is an online community marketplace for people to list, discover and book accommodation around the world. Total amount of funding that it has secured till now is $794.8 million in 6 rounds from 18 investors. The investors being TPG Growth, T.Rowe Price, Dragoneer Investment Group, SV Angel, Jeremy Stoppelman and others. A total of 7 acquisitions the company has made till now. It acquired Pencil Labs, Localmind, Fondu, NabeWise and others.

Latest funding raised by Airbnb was in April 2014 of $475 million Series D from investors TPG Growth, T.Rowe Price and Dragoneer Investment Group.



Shown Above: Dropbox Founders – Image Source: techcrunch

Founded in 2007 and based in US, Dropbox enables users to preserve their photos, documents, videos and files and these data can be accessed from any place. ill date it has received a funding of $1.1 billion in 6 rounds from 23 investors. QueensBridge Venture Partners, Salesforce ventures, T.Rowe Price, BlackRock, Accel Partners, Sequoia Capital are some of the 23 investors. In total, the company has made 21 acquisitions till date.

Latest funding that Dropbox secured was $500 million, in April 2014 from QueensBridge Venture Partners.



Shown Above: Snapchat Founders – Image Source: mshcdn

US-based Snapchat was founded in 2011. It is a photo messaging app that allows users to take photos, record videos, add text and drawings, and send them.. One can also set a timer upto 10 seconds for the image visibility. Till date it has secured a total funding of $648 million in 6 rounds from 11 investors namely, August Capital, Yahoo!, GIC, Coatue Management, Benchmark, SV Angel and others. In total it has acquired 3 companies. The acquired companies are Vergence Labs, Scan and AddLive.

Latest funding that it has secured was in December 2014 $485 million Series D from August Capital, Yahoo!, GIC and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.


theranos founder

Shown Above: Elizabeth Holmes, Founder and CEO, Theranos – Image Source: gannett-cdn

Founded in 2003, Theranos is a US based startup. Itis a consumer healthcare technology company. Theranos’ clinical laboratory offers comprehensive laboratory tests from samples as small as a few drops of blood at unprecedented low prices. Till now the company has raised $53.9 million in 2 rounds from Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ).

Most recent funding that the company received  was $45 million Venture in July 2010.


Meituan, founded in 2010, is a China-based website, specializing in localized consumer services. It offers a selection of local restaurants, bars, cinemas, KTV, SPA, salon, and other specialty businesses with discounts. The company has raised a total funding of $1 billion in 4 rounds from 5 investors namely, Alibaba, General Atlantic, Sequoia Capital, Northern Light Venture Capital and Funding Global Innovation.

The latest funding, it raised was $700 million Series D in January 2015.

Graphical Representation of The top 73 Startups

In the illustration given above, the maximum number of startups are from US, followed by Asia and and others.Uber, a US based startup has a valuation of more than $40 billion,followed by startups like Palantir and SpaceX, which have crossed the $10 billion benchmark. Xiaomi, an Asia based startup is on the top, with a valuation even more than Uber. Flipkart stands second among the Asian startups queue, crossing $10 billion mark. Until November 2014, Xiaomi had a valuation of $10 billion. Within a month it experienced tremendous growth and crossed the mark of $40 billion, thus becoming the startup with highest market value among all.

Predicting the fate of a startup is not possible. While many manage to shine like Xiaomi, many face their doom at the very nascent stage itself. How many more multi-billion dollar startups will we have this year?

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