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Published on December 4th, 2015 | by Romina Savuleac | Credit: Romina Savuleac

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What makes Migrant Entrepreneurs so successful?

What do Ebay’s Pierre Omidyar, Google’s Sergey Brin and P&G’s William Proctor, James Gamble all have in common?

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Each of these entrepreneurs who found companies that have market caps in the tens or hundreds of billions, employing tens of thousands of workers around the world, were born outside the country where they found their companies. A study by the Partnership for a New American Economy found that 18% of America’s largest companies were started by Migrants. A further 22% were founded by children of migrants.


What makes Migrant Entrepreneurs so successful?

  1.    They are moderate risk takers and conform some researches they are twice as likely to start a new business.
    Entrepreneurship and migration have something in common: the outcome is uncertain. Both will try to add up potential costs and benefits, but in the end, they are prepared to accept the unknown consequences of their actions.
    Moving to another country encompasses even greater unknowns, we can assume that the same willingness to take on risk in becoming an entrepreneur will be displayed by immigrants.
  2.    Currently they are responsible for more than 28% of all new businesses and related job growth. immigrants understand potential niches which are typically under-served. Amadeo Giannini an  Italian raised in the U.S., observed how difficult it was for migrants to get loans, so he started the Bank of Italy, later named Bank of America ; In 2014 the bank employed 233,000 people and had revenues of billion.
  3.    Their innovational spirit is represented by starting one fourth of the engineering and technology companies worldwide. For example the Nigerian Jason Njoku, who noticed that accessing Nollywood movies online was not as straightforward as desired for his mom that wanted to watch the movies in UK. He solved the problem and flew by back to Lagos to obtain an online license directly from the producers. He created a successful YouTube channel iROKOtv, that has been recognized as a pioneer of African tech startups.
  4.    Connecting markets: migrant entrepreneurs often succeed because they leverage their ability to connect markets. A good example are the Asian, Exotic, Russian shops in Belgium that sell products specific to other cultures.The main idea behind these shops is the import of products that are not readily available in local shops.
  5.    Serving existing customers differently – “Serve and service your customer first, the rest will follow.” This is the motto of Murat Kıran, who started out by being a cleaner in the Netherlands and who eventually became the founder of Conclusion. This company had a growth of 7000% during the period of 2004 to 2009 and has nowadays more than 2000 exceptional employees spread across several different locations in the Netherlands. Mr Kiran believes in helping his clients through sharing knowledge and making the most of many talents that ensure steady progress and a constant flow of exciting new energy.

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