Immigrants are a crucial part of Silicon Valley. Many market transforming companies have been founded by immigrants. Furthermore, all of my portfolio companies rely on outstanding immigrant employees every day. Over the past couple years, Vivek has been at the forefront sounding the alarm about America’s flawed immigration system. In this book, he writes persuasively about the problem and what we need to do to solve it. A must read.
Reid Hoffman, co-founder and executive chairman, LinkedIn and partner at Greylock
The revolutionary waves of innovation in information technology emanating from Silicon Valley over the past decades have been powered in no small part by recent arrivals on our shores. But the tide is going out, as short-sighted policies block the flow of skilled immigrants which has contributed so much to entrepreneurship in the U.S.. The Immigrant Exodus: Why America Is Losing the Global Race to Capture Entrepreneurial Talent is a cautionary tale of a great success going wrong and what we can do to reverse this trend before it is too late.
Mitch Kapor, founder Lotus Development Corp.
With his masterful blend of hard-hitting analyses and empathy for the real people who strive to succeed, Vivek lays out a strategy for keeping America the birthplace of great innovation. He understands that staying competitive means recognizing and welcoming talent in all its forms. Equally compelling to those who care about shoring up the economy and increasing diversity in Silicon Valley, The Immigrant Exodus is a must read.
Freada Kapor Klein, Ph.D. founder of the Level Playing Field Institute (http://lpfi.org/)
I came to the US from Canada in 1993 to attend Stanford business school. As an engineer, my dream was to start a company in Silicon Valley. That dream was realized when I became the first fulltime employee and President of eBay. Along the way, I held virtually every kind of visa, J1, TN1 (Canadian Free Trade), H1B, O1 and finally a green card. And every visa was a painful exercise! In 1999, after I had helped take eBay public and the company had 3,000 employees, my H1B renewal was declined for reasons that no one can fathom to this day. Fortunately by then I had made enough connections and could afford good lawyers to help me right my path. But not everyone is so lucky and in the wake of 9/11, things have only become more difficult. America became a superpower on the premise of welcoming the best and brightest from all over the world. Today those potential contributors to the economy are more likely than not to give up in exasperation and return to their home countries. It doesn’t need to be this way. Vivek has been an outstanding champion for the cause and today we must stand with him. America remains the beacon of hope for talented individuals from around the world, let’s not allow this flame to be extinguished.
Jeff Skoll, first employee and first president of eBay (#347 on the Forbes billionaires list)
The venture capital business in Silicon Valley has been all about immigrants since my Dad funded David Lee at Qume. For Draper Fisher Jurvetson, immigrants have been the tomato in the BLT. Sabeer Bhatia, an immigrant from India started Hotmail. Elon Musk, an immigrant from South Africa started Tesla and SpaceX, and Samir Arora, an immigrant from India, started Glam Media. Our domestic business would be significantly less valuable without immigrants.
Tim Draper, Founder and Managing Director, Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ)
For more than three centuries, generations of talented immigrants have contributed their energies and intellects, their entrepreneurial and technical skills, to America’s greatness. The Immigrant Exodus is a wakeup call that the U.S. risks losing that source of inspiration and innovation. Vivek Wadhwa proposes enlightened and constructive ways to keep the American Dream alive for the best and brightest global talent that is so essential to America’s future.
Klaus Kleinfeld, Chairman and CEO, Alcoa