Collison in 2015
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
|Known for||Auctomatic; Croma; Stripe|
|Net worth||US$3.2 billion (February 2020)|
|Relatives||John Collison (brother)|
|Awards||Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition (2004) |
BT Young Scientist of the Year (2005)
Patrick Collison (born 9 September 1988) is an Irish billionaire entrepreneur. He is the co-founder and CEO of Stripe, which he started with his younger brother, John, in 2010. He won the 41st Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition in 2005 at the age of sixteen.
Collison lives in San Francisco, California. The brothers were worth at least $3.2 billion each after Stripe raised $150 million from CapitalG, an investment division of Google parent's company Alphabet, and General Catalyst Partners. In September 2019, it was announced that Stripe had raised an additional $250 million at a valuation of $35 billion. Together, the brothers hold a controlling interest in Stripe and will be able to retain control should the company go public.
Patrick Collison was born to microbiologist Lily and engineer Denis Collison in 1988, and were brought up in the small village of Dromineer in County Tipperary. The eldest of three boys, he took his first computer course when he was eight years old at the University of Limerick and began learning computer programming at the age of ten.
Collison entered the 40th Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition with his project on artificial intelligence (nicknamed 'Isaac' after Isaac Newton, whom Patrick admired), finishing as individual runner-up. He re-entered the following year, and won first place at the age of sixteen on 14 January 2005. His project involved the creation of Croma, a LISP-type programming language.
His prize of a €3,000 cheque and a trophy of Waterford Crystal was presented to him by President Mary McAleese. His younger brother Tommy participated with his project on blogging in the Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition in 2010.
He attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology, but eventually dropped out in 2009 after starting businesses. In 2007, he set up software company 'Shuppa' (a play on the Irish word siopa, meaning 'shop') in Limerick with his brother John Collison. Enterprise Ireland did not allocate funding to the company, prompting a move to California after Silicon Valley's Y Combinator showed interest, where they merged with two Oxford graduates, Harjeet and Kulveer Taggar, and the company became Auctomatic.
On Good Friday of March 2008, Collison, aged nineteen, and his brother, aged seventeen, sold Auctomatic to Canadian company Live Current Media, becoming overnight millionaires. In May 2008 he became director of engineering at the company's new Vancouver base. Collison attributes the success of his company to his win in the Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition.
Both Collison and his younger brother John were featured on a young Irish persons rich list aired on an RTÉ television show during the 2008 Christmas period.
In 2010, Patrick co-founded Stripe, which in 2011 received investment of $2 million including from from PayPal co-founders Elon Musk and Peter Thiel, and venture capital firms Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, and SV Angel.
In November 2016, the Collison brothers became the world's youngest self-made billionaires, worth at least $1.1 billion, after an investment in Stripe from CapitalG and General Catalyst Partners valued the company at $9.2 billion.
According to Collison, he reads books and is interested in a broad range of subjects on history, technology, engineering, fiction, philosophy, and art. He publishes the list of books he read on his website. In November 2018, Collison published a piece in The Atlantic with Michael Nielsen entitled Science is Getting Less Bang for its Buck, arguing that increased investment in science hasn't produced commensurate output. In 2019, Collison published an opinion piece in the same outlet with Tyler Cowen arguing for a new academic discipline called "Progress Studies", which would study the cultural and institutional conditions which lead to the most progress and higher standards of living.
On 29 June 2020 Collison criticized the Chinese governments treatment of Uighurs tweeting: "As a US business (and tech) community, I think we should be significantly clearer about our horror at, and opposition to, the atrocities being committed by the Chinese government against its own people".
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- Torres, Blanca (3 May 2018). "Are tech CEOs finally tackling the Bay Area housing crisis? Stripe jumps into the fight". San Francisco Business Times. Archived from the original on 27 October 2020.
- "https://twitter.com/patrickc/status/1277783532182671361". Twitter. Archived from the original on 30 June 2020. Retrieved 30 June 2020. External link in