Celebrating Startups in the State of the UnionTue, 01/31/2012 - 12:23 — admin
The White House Blog
January 31, 2012
Ed note: In honor of the one year anniversary of Startup America, we invited Mike Krieger, the co-founder of Instagram, to contribute a post to WhiteHouse.gov. Instagram is the fastest growing social mobile startup in the U.S. today, and exemplifies President Obama's belief that "entrepreneurs embody the promise of America: the idea that if you have a good idea and are willing to work hard and see it through, you can succeed in this country. And in fulfilling this promise, entrepreneurs also play a critical role in expanding our economy and creating jobs." Mr. Krieger moved from Brazil to California to attend Stanford University, where he studied computer science and cognitive science. In 2010, he and a partner founded Instagram, which now employs a talented, growing team of designers and engineers. After graduation, Mr. Krieger worked for a year on his student F-1 visa, later applying for and receiving an H-1B visa as a high-skill worker. Mr. Krieger wants to permanently stay in the U.S. and has applied for a green card.
I was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and from an early age was interested in technology and engineering. When I came to the United States in 2004 to attend university at Stanford, I was instantly inspired by the stories and advice from startup leaders in Silicon Valley and beyond, who had endeavoured to create new opportunities and improve lives around the world. I was drawn to the idea of one day helping to create a startup, and last year, I was fortunate to be given the chance. In May of 2010, I joined Kevin Systrom, my co-founder, and we created Instagram, a mobile social network that today has over 15 million users. What began as a small, two-person startup working out of a pier in San Francisco has grown to a dozen employees, and our plan is to at least double that this year. There are few better sights than walking into an office full of talented, hard-working folks, working together to build a great company from the ground up.