Photo: NextGen Journal
From venture capitalists to founders, we rounded up 25 super stars who are creating big names for themselves in Silicon Valley despite their young ages.Take Ernestine Fu for example.
At age 20, she’s the youngest venture capitalist in the Bay Area. The Mensa member and Stanford undergrad has already been on the cover of Forbes Magazine.
The crazy thing is that she’s not the youngest person mixing it up in Silicon Valley.
What he's done: Gross challenged Google with a search engine he built, Greplin. Greplin has raised $5 million from Sequoia Capital.
Gross is the youngest Y Combinator founder ever; he skipped college altogether.
Brian Wong, founder of Kiip, is one of the youngest people to ever receive venture capital. He skipped four grades and graduated college when he was 18.
What he's done: Brian Wong has been ahead of his peers for a while now. He skipped four grades between elementary and high school and graduated college at age 18. He was named one of the youngest people to ever receive funding by a venture capital firm.
Wong has received numerous entrepreneurial accolades from Mashable, AdAge, Forbes and the Vancouver Sun.
Before founding Kiip, Wong did business development for Digg.
Darshan Shankar, Sridatta Thatipamala, and Eric Zhang cofounded Flotype, the startup behind popular app-maker NowJS
Age: 20, 20 and 20
What they've done: Shankar, Thatipamala and Zhang created Flotype, a breakout winter 2011 Y-Combinator company.
It is best known for NowJS, technology that enables everyone, from startups to enterprises, to easily build large-scale, real-time web applications. The Berkeley-based startup has raised a seed round of financing and is currently raising a Series A.
Ages: 25 and 24, respectively
What they've done: Topher Conway and Kevin Carter are both partners at SV Angel, the firm Topher's father Ron founded.
Prior to joining SV Angel, Topher Conway graduated from UCLA and did business development for EQAL.
Carter graduated from Santa Clara University in 2009 and worked for SVB Financial Group.
What he's done: Levine began his career at TechCrunch and left to participate in Y Combinator.
He founded a data/analytics company, Chart.io, and now evaluates early-stage companies for Accel Partners.
Akshay Kothari and Ankit Gupta created tablet news reader, Pulse. They have partnerships with 150 publishers including the Wall Street Journal and CNN.
Ages: 25 and 24, respectively.
What they've done: Kothari and Gupta cofounded tablet news reader, Pulse. They started it as a grad school project at Stanford University and grew it to 5 million users with 13 employees, and $9 million in funding from NEA, Greycroft Partners, and Lerer Ventures.
Pulse has been named to Apple's App Store Hall of Fame. It was selected as one of TIME's top 50 iPhone apps of 2011. More than 150 publishers partner with Pulse including The Atlantic, CNET, CNN, ESPN, Gawker, and The Huffington Post.
What he's done: An Ex-Googler, Primiani cofounded Backplane. It's a social network for big brands and celebrities; it aggregates all of their social media streams.
Lady Gaga reportedly holds a 20% stake in the company. Eric Schmidt is also an investor.
Age: 20 and 21, respectively
What they've done: Jessica Mah is a breath of fresh air for women in tech. There's nothing wrong with creating a fashion/beauty/women-focused startup, but it's nice to see a female disrupting the financial industry.
InDinero is a Mint-like money management tool. When Mah raised $1 million last year, she had to fend off investors who were all too excited to throw money her way.
TechCrunch called her 'the closest we've come to a female Mark Zuckerberg.' She started her first company at age 13.
What he's done: Formerly a TechCrunch reporter, Kimerling joined recently-launched mobile gift card company, Giftly, as COO.
Giftly was founded by Tim Bentley, an early member of Aardvark, which sold to Google. The startup launched in September and the team has already raised a multi-million-dollar seed round.
What he's done: Motes went to MIT along with Dropbox founders Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi. He was the company's first hire.
Before Dropbox, Motes was a software engineer at OkCupid and an intern at Microsoft and Google.
Ages: 25 and 23
What they've done: Stanford 2008 alumns Jason Prado and Ben Eidelson sold their startup, Plannr, to Google last year. TechCrunch guessed the amount at $6 million.
Google has since shut it down, but Prado and Eidelson have been busy founding and running the Google+ Messenger product as well as some Google+ mobile products.
What he's done: Krieger cofounded Instagram, the year-old photo app that already has ~ 10 million users.
What he's done: Lynn has climbed the ranks at Twitter and now manages its mobile business development. Prior to joining Twitter, Lynn did business development for Cooliris.
He's athletic too. Lynn played football at Stanford University.
What he's done: Clerico used to be an investment banker until he cofounded WePay with Rich Aberman.
The pair raised $9.2 million from Highland Capital Partners, August Capital, Y Combinator, Ron Conway's SV Angel, Dave McClure, and Max Levchin for the payment collection site.
What he's done: Daniel Ha founded Disqus to help fend off comment trolls. He raised $14.5 million in a round led by Union Square Ventures.
Adam Goldstein cofounded Hipmunk, a Y Combinator company that searches for flights based on convenience.
What he's done: Goldstein cofounded Hipmunk, a search engine for air travel that's based on convenience.
He and his cofounder Steve Huffman raised $5.2 million and participated in Y Combinator.
What she's done: Jessica Scorpio and her cofounders Sam Zaid and Elliot Krool cofounded Getaround.
Getaround won TechCrunch Disrupt NYC this past summer and raised a $3.4 million seed round of financing in September.
What she's done: The Mensa member and Stanford University student is already entrenched in the Silicon Valley tech scene. She's an associate at Alsop Louie Partners and helps them source investments. In particular, she hunts for fellow student entrepreneurs.
Fu has already graced the cover of Forbes magazine and was named an all-star student entrepreneur.
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