Tomasz Tunguz wrote a fantastic blog post analyzing the founding team of 30 billion dollar startups, and made the following conclusions:
- The average founding team has 2.4 founders; the median is 2
- 70% of teams have at least one technical founder
- 40% of teams are exclusively computer scientists
- 15% of founders have dropped out of an undergraduate or graduate degree program
- 10% of founders have an MBA
I wasn't fully convinced with the US-biased data set. Growing up abroad and through my experience building a startup overseas, I admit to a skeptical frame of reference that startup patterns in the US do not necessarily reflect a framework applicable across the world. This is always due to cultural differences, but sometimes it's the way the market is, or the business culture, or the interpersonal relationship culture.
I finally found the data set that reflected a worldwide sample set. I ran across Wall Street Journal's set of billion dollar startups from across the world, and applied the same Tunguzian framework. These are the results:
- The average founding team has 1.9 founders; the median is 2
- 33% of teams have at least one technical founder
- 19% of teams are exclusively computer scientists
- 9% of founders have dropped out of an undergraduate or graduate degree program
- 17% of founders have an MBA
My full data set here. I'd love to get your thoughts.
* Tom Tunguz's post of founder profiles * Crunchbase * Wikipedia * Company websites * LinkedIn * Tech.eu's article on Zalando and Venture Village's article on Zalando * and other public sources