The Fellowship + Stripe Atlas

by Kevin Hale2/24/2016

Great startups can come from anywhere in the world. One of the Fellowship’s goals is to make it as easy as possible for founders to start companies with strong foundations, no matter where they’re located. It’s one of the reasons why we’re designing a program that founders can participate in without having to move to Silicon Valley.

Unfortunately, international founders who join YC usually have to navigate fairly complicated processes just to get access to the same tools as their US counterparts. There are two reasons why we set up YC companies as U.S. entities with U.S. bank accounts:
1) Access to the largest pot of seed capital in the world. U.S. investors tend to avoid investing in foreign entities.

2) It’s easier to collect revenue with a U.S. bank account in the U.S. market, which for most of our companies is still the largest market for them to go after.

Today, Stripe announced the launch of Atlas, a beta program designed to streamline the process of getting the basic building blocks of starting a company assembled without hassle. In partnership with Stripe, we’ll be offering Atlas to future Fellowship companies located overseas.

Atlas allows international founders to get everything they need to create a business in the U.S. simply by filling out a web form. Stripe handles the rest, providing each business with:

1) An incorporated U.S. business entity
2) A U.S. bank account

3) A live Stripe account to receive payments from anywhere in the world
4) Access to services they’ll need to get started; including tax advice from PwC, legal guidance from leading international law firm Orrick, and $15,000 credit to Amazon Web Services to help scale their newly global business

Stripe initially joined YC to rethink how payments on the internet should work. Now they’ve rethought what borders mean for business. We’re delighted to be working with Stripe to make it easier for our international founders to spend more time working on their startup and less time on paperwork.


  • Kevin Hale

    Kevin was a Partner at YC. He was cofounder of Wufoo, which was funded by Y Combinator in 2006 and acquired by SurveyMonkey in 2011.