Unicorns are a thing of fairy tales ...except in the high-stakes world of Silicon Valley startups.
In 2019, seven different U.S. startups have already become so-called “unicorns," the term for a company whose valuation has soared past $1 billion, generally due to the success of its latest funding round.
The name was initially coined in 2013 because of how rare it was for startups to be valued at $1 billion — 39 companies fit the description at the time. Fast forward five years and that's no longer the case: In 2018 alone, 54 U.S. companies joined the club, according to a running list from CB Insights, a financing and investment database from startup directory platform Crunchbase. It's a combination of startups staying private longer (see: Uber) and more money being available in the market. The class of 2019 has already raised more than $2 billion, according to data pulled from Crunchbase. More money means more job openings, of course, and a startup provides plenty of opportunity for employee growth — and maybe even a slice of the pie, if and when the company goes public.
These companies are mostly looking for engineers or data scientists, since every company crossing that billion-dollar-line relies on technology in some way. And almost all are also looking for sales representatives and product managers to help them expand to attract more investors and cross that next milestone. But there are jobs in other fields too, depending on the company’s specific needs.
Here's a snapshot of 7 of the hottest startups right now — and the jobs they're hiring for.
During the era of big data and privacy concerns, startup Collibra and its “data governance technology” is coming out on top. The platform helps companies understand what data they have to allow them to ensure that they’re within the parameters of the law when it comes to gathering and using consumer data such as email addresses or social security numbers.
The company was founded in 2008, but some pretty significant data privacy-related events from the last year — e.g. Facebook's privacy scandals and the European Union’s stricter data protection regulations — helped Collibra become one of the first unicorns of 2019. It took 11 years for it to raise $134 million, and only the last year to raise $100 million more, putting its valuation at $1 billion as of January 2019.
The New York-based company is hiring for positions in New York City, Brussels, London, Paris, and other cities in Europe, Australia, and the U.S. It’s currently in need of various engineers, product managers, accountants, customer service representatives, marketing professionals and sales representatives.
Calm, a startup aimed at helping people ease their minds through meditation, hit a milestone in February when it broke through the noise of today’s meditation app market and became the first one to hit a $1 billion valuation.
Ironically, apps like Calm sought out to improve mindfulness as a response to the negative effects of screen time. For $60 a year, or a one-time payment of $300 for life, Calm provides users with a range of services, from Sleep Stories (A.K.A. adult bedtime stories, including one told by Matthew McConaughey) to thousands of meditation tutorials available via its app and website.
It wasn’t the first of its kind when it came out in 2012, but so far Calm has established itself as the most highly valued. It’s raised $116 million since its Series B funding round wrapped up in February, and it's hiring for a ton of positions, all based out of San Francisco. Calm is on the hunt for engineers and data scientists, administrative roles and recruiters, product managers, and sales representatives on the executive and non-executive levels.
Aurora is what happens when three experts from the self-driving programs at Google, Tesla, and Uber come together to start a company aimed at developing the technology for fully autonomous cars. Since its inception in 2016, car manufacturers like Hyundai and Volkswagen have partnered with it and — more recently — Amazon became an investor, contributing to its unicorn status.
Aurora has raised $620 million in only two funding rounds, $530 million of which came from the second round alone, notably led by Sequoia Capital. That didn’t just make it a unicorn — it made Aurora’s valuation twice that of any other 2019 unicorn, pushing its valuation past $2 billion.
Needless to say, Aurora is growing its workforce quickly. There are more than 50 open positions in the Bay Area or Pittsburgh, within seven departments: software engineering, hardware engineering, technical operations, strategy, partnership, product, and general and administrative (includes finance, IT, legal, and graphic design).
In February, digital health company Health Catalyst became the next startup to reach unicorn status. Its healthcare analytics apps help hospitals use the data they already to have in order to operate more efficiently, like the Data Operating System that provides AI-powered insights.
It’s raised $377 million over the course of multiple rounds since 2008, and is hiring for jobs in Salt Lake City, UT and Pittsburgh, PA. In addition to engineer positions and a few executive-level openings, Health Catalyst is hiring interns as well as a senior writer for content marketing.
China-backed autonomous trucking company TuSimple is trying to commercialize self-driving trucks for long-distance trucking. Its trucks are making multiple fully autonomous trips a day on multiple different routes, with two “safety engineers” — one in the truck, one back at HQ.
It plans on ramping up this year, and investors are here for it: The $95 million it brought in this February means it’s raised a total of $178 million since 2015, which puts TuSimple at a $1.09 billion valuation.
The company is hiring a number of software engineers, a couple of hardware engineers, and both mechanical and electrical engineers — all of the elements needed to build a self-driving truck. But it’s also on the lookout for a number of professionals in research and development (including interns), as well as employees in its human resources, accounting, and product teams.
Best of all, you get to do it from sunny San Diego, CA or Tucson, AZ.
Banking app Chime offers a service that its website calls “Banking the way it should be.” That means a no-fee debit card and features like helping you save small change akin to a piggy bank. And it’s FDIC-insured to give users the financial and mental security they need.
Chime says its mobile-only bank has more than three million bank accounts, which is one million more than last summer — a 50% increase. It tripled its valuation in its latest funding round, making it worth $1.5 billion as of the first week of March.
Chime’s user-friendly approach to banking means its hiring employees in a range of fields, including design and strategy (e.g. a Lending & Credit Strategy Manager). They’re also looking for a number of product managers, recruiters, and growth specialists. All of Chime’s jobs are based out of San Francisco.
Known best by consumers for its candid ad campaigns about erectile dysfunction, Hims considers itself a “men’s wellness” company, creating men’s care products in five categories: Hair, Sex, Skin, Well-Being, Mouth. In November, founder and CEO Andrew Dudum launched a sister site, called Hers.
The in-your-face marketing tactics seemed to catch investors’ attention pretty quickly. It launched in 2017 out of San Francisco, CA and in the year and a half since, Hims has raised nearly $200 million, more than half of which came from its January 2019 funding round that put it on the unicorn list.
It’s the only direct-to-consumer product company in 2019’s unicorn class so far, and one of two to reach unicorn status as early as January. Unfortunately, the men’s wellness e-commerce company doesn’t seem to be hiring for any positions at this time. Money reached out for confirmation, but did not hear back at the time of publishing this article.
This post has been updated from the original.