THE STORY OF PAYPAL AND THE ENTREPRENEURS WHO SHAPED SILICON VALLEY
In The Founders: The Story of PayPal and the Entrepreneurs Who Shaped Silicon Valley, award-winning author and biographer Jimmy Soni explores PayPal’s turbulent early days. With hundreds of interviews and unprecedented access to thousands of pages of internal material, he shows how the seeds of fast-scaling digital start-ups, cashless currency concepts, mobile money transfer – were planted two decades ago.
He also reveals the stories of countless individuals who were left out of the frontpage features and banner headlines but who were central to PayPal’s success.
Today, PayPal’s founders and earliest employees are considered the technology industry’s most powerful network. Since leaving PayPal, they have formed, funded, and advised the leading companies of our era, including Tesla, Facebook, YouTube, SpaceX, Yelp, Palantir, and LinkedIn, among any others. As a group, they have driven twenty-first-century innovation and entrepreneurship. Their names stir passions; they’re as controversial as they are admired.
Yet for all their influence, the story of where they first started has gone largely untold. Before igniting the commercial space race or jump starting social media’s rise, they were the unknown creators of a scrappy online payments startup called PayPal. In building what became one of the world’s foremost companies, they faced bruising competition, internal strife, the emergence of widespread online fraud, and the devastating dot-com bust of the 2000s.
The Founders is a story of iteration and inventiveness –the products of which have cast a long and powerful shadow over modern life. This narrative illustrates how this rare assemblage of talent came to work together and how their collaboration changed our world forever.
Jimmy Soni is an award winning author. His previous book, A Mind at Play: How Claude Shannon Invented the Information Age, won the 2017 Neumann Prize, awarded by the British Society for the History of Mathematics for the best book on the history of mathematics for a general audience; and the 2019 Middleton Prize by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.
His latest book is The Founders: The Story of PayPal and the Entrepreneurs Who Shaped Silicon Valley, and recently he completed with the late Jane Walentas, Jane’s Carousel, which captured one woman’s remarkable twenty five- year journey to restore a beloved carousel in Brooklyn Bridge Park. The writer lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his daughter, Venice