The term “unicorn” refers to a privately owned startup valued at over $1 billion. Reaching unicorn status is a rare feat. In order to become one, a company must have an innovative idea, a clear vision for growth, and a solid business plan, as well as a viable way to get its message to venture capitalists and private investors.
The term was coined by Aileen Lee, who noted that only a mere 0.07% of 2000s software startups reached this status. She likened finding one to spotting a mythical unicorn. The concept emerged in the 1990s, with Google standing out as a “super-unicorn,” boasting a $100 billion valuation. The 2000s also witnessed the rise of unicorns, but only Meta (formerly Facebook) achieved super-unicorn status. Other notable U.S. unicorns include Airbnb, Epic Games, Robinhood, and SoFi.
In this list, we’ll look at three private companies that are chasing some of the market’s biggest opportunities and growing despite a tough capital markets environment and a slowing economy.
Investors who track the growth of these innovators as they journey towards their IPOs stand the best chance for exponential gains once the company becomes public. So ride the wave of opportunity with us, and watch for your chance to get in on the ground floor of the next Google or Meta.
Founders: Assaf Rappaport (CEO), Ami Luttwak, Yinon Costica, Roy Reznik
Headquarters: New York City
Funding: $900 million
Valuation: $10 billion
Key technologies: Cloud computing
Industry: Enterprise technology
From the heart of Tel Aviv, hyper-growth sensation, Wiz, is setting an ambitious course to achieve a remarkable $100 million in revenue within a mere 18-month span. Wiz stands at the forefront as a trailblazer in the realm of cybersecurity, introducing an innovative approach that swiftly identifies and addresses cyber risks, all while paving the way for a novel category of cloud-centric security solutions.
Wiz’s recent exponential growth surge can be attributed to a constellation of factors, including the strategic launch of new cutting-edge products, strategic partnerships with heavyweight names like BMW and Salesforce, and the privilege of serving a substantial segment of the Fortune 100 echelon.
This unfolding narrative coincides with the cloud’s transformation, transcending the confines of mere computing access and storage to profoundly influence the cybersecurity landscape. Consequently, the surge in demand for cloud-centric security is a palpable testament to the evolving cyber landscape.
Founders: April Koh (CEO), Adam Chekroud
Headquarters: New York City
Funding: $300 million
Valuation: $2.5 billion
Key technologies: Artificial intelligence
Industry: Health care
In the ever-evolving landscape of workplace dynamics, the spotlight has shone resolutely on mental health and worker well-being, catalyzed by the pandemic’s transformative impact on remote work trends. With a keen eye on the tight labor market, where optimal employee productivity stands as a vital linchpin, employers are increasingly channeling their focus towards addressing stress, anxiety, depression, and the looming specter of burnout. Stepping into this narrative is Spring Health, a herald of the new generation of mental health providers poised to extend their support to employers and health plans.
Spring Health’s journey began as an academic research endeavor over at Yale University. From there, it transformed into something truly remarkable. Armed with clinically validated data, Spring Health emerged as a force to reckon with. They’re tapping into the precision medicine trend, leveraging their platform to deliver exactly what each person needs. Whether it’s meditation, coaching, therapy, medication, or a mix of these, they’re all about personalized solutions.
April Koh, the co-founder and CEO, has a powerful story behind this approach. After witnessing loved ones struggling with different providers, programs, and medications without success, she decided to take a bold, data-driven route. And you know what? She’s absolutely onto something. In her own words, “Every setback chips away at one’s courage and hope. In five to ten years, the landscape of mental health care will undergo a paradigm shift. It will evolve from the realm of uncertainty to one marked by precision, driven by data, tailored to each individual,” as she shared on the company’s website.
In the here and now, Spring Health has seamlessly woven its expertise into the fabric of over 800 companies spanning startups to global Fortune 500 stalwarts, counting General Mills, Bain, and Instacart among its beneficiaries. Notably, 2022 witnessed its portfolio welcoming the likes of Microsoft, JPMorgan Chase, and Trinity Health. The acquisition of family wellness platform Weldon, unveiled in May, was a strategic stride to offer more holistic services, touching aspects such as sleep, behavior, conflicts, grief, developmental challenges, and neurodiversity within families. The canvas of its influence expanded across 40 countries and 20 languages, and the company raised $71 million in April, constituting a quarter of its overall capital raised.
Founder: Tim Ellis (CEO), Jordan Noone
Headquarters: Long Beach, California
Funding: $1.3 billion
Valuation: $4.2 billion
Key technologies: Artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, digital twins
Industry: Aerospace, transportation
Relativity Space has made its mark by launching a 3D-printed rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida this March. Now, while the initial test flight didn’t quite reach orbit, this space startup isn’t slowing down. Their mission? To revolutionize rocket manufacturing, making it cheaper and faster for upcoming journeys to the moon and Mars.
Billionaire investor and entrepreneurial virtuoso Mark Cuban has backed Relativity since its initial round of funding 2016, extending his patronage in successive funding rounds. This symphony of support harmonizes with the backing of Tiger Global, BOND, and Fidelity Research and Management, all conducted under the baton of Relativity Space’s magnetic allure. In a crescendo of investment, the startup resonated with a $650 million raise in its fifth funding cycle during June 2021, magnifying its valuation to the exalted echelons of $4.2 billion.
While Relativity Space’s spotlight spans from commercial pioneers to the resolute arm of the U.S. government, the apex of recognition comes courtesy of NASA. In 2022, this pioneering entity penned a twenty-year partnership with NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Mississippi, unfurling a new chapter in growth.
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