Limerick’s youngest multi-millionaire brothers came back home from Silicon Valley this week to launch their online payment services business, called Stripe, in Ireland.
Valued at $0.5 billion by technology analysts in the US, Stripe is backed by Peter Thiel, the first investor in Facebook and a founder of Paypal.
However, the former Castletroy College students, who shot to prominence in their teenage years, said this week that they have no plans to sell the company, which currently employs over 60 people, and want to focus on expanding their international operations.
After leaving places in prestigious American colleges – at MIT and Harvard – on work on their start-up firms, they went on to sell their first company, Auctomatic, to Canadian firm Live Current Media in 2008 for $5m.
“We were lucky enough where we had the experience of selling a technology company pretty early in our careers and we saw what that is, and I guess straight afterwards you want to get back to solving meaningful problems with people you admire and enjoy working with. That’s what we get to do with Stripe,” said Patrick Collison.
The 24-year-old said it is impossible at this time to put a true value on their company – which allows businesses to easily accept cash online – as it is still in its infancy.
“Internet company valuations tend to rise as well as fall, so this very much remains a hypothetical number,” he said of the company’s reputed $500m worth. Earlier estimates put the company at a $1bn valuation.