LinkedIn's surprising list of the 50 hottest startups for job seekers names Uber as No. 1

Uber employees with Dara KhosrowshahiLinkedIn/UberUber employees with Dara Khosrowshahi (center back)

LinkedIn released a list of the 50 most sought-after startups by job seekers on Thursday and it was chock full of surprises.

The first surprise was that Uber landed as the No. 1 most desired company by job seekers, despite its very public meltdown in 2017 that led to the resignation of its CEO, Travis Kalanick. It has since hired a new CEO and this survey indicates the company’s reputation is rebounding, and quickly.

But that’s not all. The whole list includes companies we bet you never heard of, some of them landing in the top 10. And they aren’t all located in Silicon Valley either.

LinkedIn determined this list by working with researcher CB Insights. They began with 25,000 startups and then analysed for:

  • headcount growth
  • how many people follow the company’s LinkedIn page
  • how often people looked at employees’ LinkedIn pages
  • how interested people are in the company’s job listings
  • and, last by not least, how much poaching the company is accomplishing from other top companies.

Here’s a rundown of who these startups are, where they are and what they do.

No. 50: Elastic


Elastic offers tools for developers, hosted on Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud and is best known for its search engine Elasticsearch.

It's also known for hiring a lot of remote workers. Although based in Mountain View, it hires people who work all over the world.

No. 49: Casper


Casper is a mattress startup based in New York that lets consumers order a mattress online and ships it in a box directly to them.

No. 48: Credit Karma


Credit Karma is San Francisco-based consumer finance company best known for letting consumers monitor their credit reports.

No. 47: Docker

Docker founder and CTO Solomon Hykes

Docker is a San Francisco-based startup that makes tools for developers. It is best known for creating a hot new programming market known as 'containers.'

No. 46: Glint


Glint is a Redwood City, California-based human resources software startup best known for employee-engagement surveys.

No. 45: Skuid


Skuid is a startup based in Chattanooga offering a cloud-based developer tool that helps businesses quickly create their own custom apps without writing code.

No. 44: Databricks

Databricks co-founder CTO Matei Zaharia

Databricks is a San Francisco-based startup who's founders created a popular big data crunching tools called Spark.

Read more: The world told 6 guys no one would buy their software: Four years later they have a $US940 million company

No. 43: Moda Operandi

Instagram/Moda Operandi

Moda Operandi is a New York based online luxury fashion retailer that allows its members to pre-order ready-to-wear accessories and jewellery.

No. 42: Pendo


Pendo is a Raleigh, North Carolina-based startup that offers a tool for developers to track and analyse how people are using their apps.

No. 41: Cohesity

Cohesity founder Mohit Aron

Cohesity is a Santa Clara, California-based startup that provides tools for managing computer storage.

It was founded by Mohit Aron, an early Google employee who is best known as the cofounder of another storage trailblazing company, Nutanix.

Read more: This founder left his $US4 billion company before the IPO because he had an even better idea

No. 40: Zenreach


Zenreach is a San Francisco-based marketing software startup.

No. 39: ThoughtSpot


No. 39: ThoughtSpot is a Palo Alto, California-based startup that uses artificial intelligence to sift through big data and find insights.

No. 38: Snowflake Computing

Snowflake Computing CEO Bob Muglia

Snowflake Computing is San Mateo, California based startup that offers a form of big-data storage known as a 'data warehouse' designed to run in the cloud.

It is also known for grabbing former Microsoft executive Bob Muglia as its CEO.

No. 37: Virgin Hyperloop One

Virgin Hyperloop One

Virgin Hyperloop One is the LA-based transportation company building a high-speed, next-generation way to travel first envisioned by Elon Musk and known as the 'hyperloop.'

Hyperloop One is not affiliate with Musk. He's got his own startup called The Boring Company. But it recently landed Virgin business mogul Richard Branson as a backer and changed its name to join his collection of Virgin-named businesses.

Read more: Virgin Group just invested in Hyperloop One -- and Richard Branson now sits on the board

No. 36: Sprout Social

Glassdoor/Sprout Social
Sprout Social employees

Sprout Social is a Chicago-based startup that helps companies manage their social media activity.

No. 35: Darktrace

Darktrace Threat Visualizer

Darktrace is a Cambridge, UK-based cybersecurity startup that watches a company's computer network looking for signs of hackers and malicious activity by employees or other insiders.

No. 34: Robinhood


Robinhood is a Palo Alto, California-based stock brokerage startup that makes an app aimed at millennials for buying and selling U.S. listed stocks and ETFs with zero commission.

No. 33: Wish


Wish is a San Francisco-based startup that makes a popular shopping app.

No. 32: Stitch Fix

Stitch Fix

Stitch Fix is a San Francisco-based online personal shopping service for clothing and accessories.

It doesn't plan on being a startup much longer. Stitch Fix filed the paperwork for its IPO in October.

No. 31: Coursera

Steve Jennings / Stringer / Getty Images
Coursera Co-Founder Daphne Koller

Coursera, based in Mountain View, California, is a popular online education company that offers courses from over 140 universities and other educational institutions.

No. 30: Convene


Convene is a New York-based startup that offers businesses meeting rooms and conference rooms and provides them with technical support.

No. 29: Ring

Matt Weinberger/Business Insider

Ring is a Santa Monica, California-based startup that offers internet-connected outdoor home security products like smart doorbells and cameras.

No. 28: Katerra


Katerra is a Scottsdale, Arizona-based construction industry startup that offers software for building design, logistics and purchasing.

No. 27: Affirm

Affirm CEO Max Levchin

Affirm is a San Francisco-based fintech startup that lets people choose to take on a loan and pay for items in installments at the point of sale.

It is known for its famous cofounder CEO, PayPal mafia member Max Levchin.

No. 26: Uptake

Uptake Technologies

Uptake is a Chicago-based startup that offers monitoring and analytics software for industrial machines.

No. 25: CrowdStrike

Crowdstrike founder CEO George Kurtz

CrowdStrike is a Sunnyvale, California-based cyber security startup that offers cloud security to protect 'endpoints' like PCs and smartphones from hackers and malware.

No. 24: Cylance

Cylance CEO Stuart McClure

Cylance is an Irvine, California-based cybersecurity startup that uses artificial intelligence to predict and prevent hack attacks.

Founder and CEO Stuart McClure is well known in the security community for his popular book 'Hacking Exposed.'

No. 23: Cybereason


Cybereason is a Boston-based computer security startup that promises to identify hack attacks in real time as they are happening.

No. 22 Opendoor

Keith Rabois

Opendoor is a San Francisco-based real estate startup that promises to help people sell their homes in a few days via an app.

It's known for its founders Eric Wu who founded other real estate startups and sold them, and Khosla Ventures VC Keith Rabois, who hailed from PayPal and later from Square.

No. 21: Blend


Blend is a San Francisco-based startup that helps mortgage lenders conduct the loan process through a mobile app.

No. 20: G2 Crowd

G2 Crowd

G2 Crowd is a Chicago-based startup that allows businesses to share reviews and feedback on business software.

No. 19: Udacity

Mike Windle/Getty Images for Vanity Fair

Udacity is a popular education startup, based in Mountain View, California, known for offering technical courses for learning to code or to study data science.

Udacity is also known for its famous founder Sebastian Thrun, founder of Google's R&D unit Google X where he led the self-driving car, Google Glass and other major projects.

No. 18: Duo Security

Duo Security

Duo Security is an Ann Arbor, Michigan-based startup that offers what's known as cloud-based two-factor authentication software.

That's computer password/login software that requires two forms of ID, typically involving two devices like a PC browser and a phone app, before it authorizes access.

No. 17: Grail

Grail CEO Jeffrey Huber

Grail is a Menlo Park, California-based life sciences company that using state of the art scanning and analytics to try and detect cancer early when it can be cured.

It hired Google exec Jeffrey Huber as its CEO and has raised $US1 billion of venture investment including an investment from Bill Gates.

No. 16: Pinterest

John Lamparski/Getty

Pinterest is a popular San Francisco based social network for sharing creative ideas by posting pictures.

No. 15: Aryaka Networks

Aryaka Networks

Aryaka Networks is a San Mateo, California-based startup that offers what's known as a content delivery network. This is software that makes a company's global computer network run faster.

No. 14: Flexport


Flexport is a San Francisco-based startup that offers software to manage shipping and freight.

No. 13: Glossier


Glossier, based in New York, is a startup that creates popular luxury beauty products for women and sells them directly to consumers.

No. 12: Stripe

Stripe cofounder and CEO Patrick Collison

Stripe is a fintech startup based in San Francisco that makes it easy for startups to accept and manage online payments.

No. 11: General Assembly

General Assembly offices

General Assembly is a New York-based education startup that offers online and in-person classrooms in multiple cities. It offers courses like coding and design boot camps.

No. 10: Convoy


Convoy is a Seattle-based startup that offers software for the trucking and shipping industry.

No. 9: Houzz

Houzz founder and CEO Adi Tatarko

Houzz is a Palo Alto-based startup that helps home owners with decorating, design and landscaping ideas and matches them with professionals.

No. 8: Dropbox

Handout/Getty Images

Dropbox is a hugely popular choice for cloud storage based in San Francisco.

No. 7: Rubrik

Rubrik CEO Bipul Sinha

Rubrik is a Palo Alto, California-based startup that offers an innovative alternative for backup storage, a way to store data on the cloud for instant recovery.

No. 6: NIO

Padmasree Warrior

NIO is a Shanghai, China-based company that makes electric vehicles.

It made waves when it hired famous former Cisco exec Padmasree Warrior has its US CEO.

No. 5: Slack

Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield

Slack is online chat software for businesses that has taken the work world by storm practically since Day 1.

It was founded by Stewart Butterfield who previously co-founded Flickr which was bought by Yahoo.

No. 4: Lyft

John Zimmer
Lyft cofounder John Zimmer

Lyft is a San Francisco-based startup that pioneered the concept of ride sharing.

No. 3: WeWork

Miguel McKelvey, WeWork co-founder

WeWork is a New York based real estate startup that offers small offices and shared office space to startups.

It is known for providing its tenants with the kinds of amenities large companies offer from coffee to yoga classes.

WeWork has raised $US9.9 billion in venture investment and its investors value it at $US20 billion.

No. 2: Airbnb

Kimberly White/Getty
Airbnb cofounder and CEO Brian Chesky

Airbnb is a San Francisco-based startup that pioneered the concept of allowing people to rent their spare rooms over the internet to travellers .

No. 1: Uber

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi

Uber is a San Francisco-based startup that rose to fame by making it easier and cheaper to order a black car chauffeur service.

It then jumped into the ride-share market to compete with Lyft and become a taxi-alternative.

The company had an awful, scandal riddled 2017 that depicted a toxic work culture and led to the resignation of its CEO Travis Kalanick.

But Uber is also changing how we transport ourselves, has some interesting self-driving car tech in the works (though that's also been a source of scandal and legal action) and has hired new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, who is trying to steer the company past its missteps.

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