Immigrants are fuelling the creation and growth of hi-tech businesses in the US, with at least one foreign-born founder in a quarter of hi-tech firms started between 1995 and 2005, says a report, titled "America's New Immigrant Entrepreneurs" that was released in January. It revealed that these companies had sales of $52 billion (Rs 2,28,800 crore then) and employed over 450,000 people in 2005.
Now, a second study, titled "Education, Entrepreneurship and Education: America's New Entrepreneurs", has shown that contrary to popular perception, only 15 per cent of Indian immigrants came from top institutions such as IITs; the rest came from 42 different colleges around the country.
Highly-skilled immigrants are better educated and earn more than their US counterparts, the study says. Immigrants from India and China earned $69,000 (Rs 30,36,000) and $46,000 (Rs 20,24,000), respectively, per annum, compared to the us national average of $39,000 (Rs 17,16,000).
It shows that Indian immigrants, who form just 0.36 per cent of that country's population, started nearly 7 per cent of all engineering and tech companies in the US between 1995 and 2000. The report was authored by Vivek Wadhwa, Ben Rissing and Gary Gerelli from Duke University, and AnnaLee Saxenian, Dean, School of Information, University of California, Berkeley.