Patrick Collison is the co-founder and CEO of Stripe, a company allowing businesses and individuals to accept payments over the internet. He was born to electronic engineer Denis Collison and microbiologist and author Lily Collison, and grew up in the countryside near Limerick, Ireland.
Patrick and his younger brother, John Collison, came up with the idea for Stripe while they were in college at MIT and Harvard, respectively. Patrick handles engineering and serves as the public face of the company. In April 2020, Stripe raised an $850 million funding round with a valuation of $36 billion.
In 2005, Patrick won the 41st Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition at the age of sixteen, for developing a programming language and AI system on LISP.
At age sixteen, he enrolled in MIT, based on the SAT he had taken at age thirteen. John followed him to the US, and in 2007 they started their first company, Auctomatic (an auction and marketplace management system), with Kulveer Taggar. Auctomatic was accepted into startup accelerator Y Combinator, and within ten months since inception the company was acquired by Canada's Live Current Media for $5 million.
In November 2016, the Collison brothers became referred to as the world's youngest billionaires, worth about $1.1 billion, after an investment from CapitalG and General Catalyst Partners valued Stripe at $9.2 billion.That same year, Patrick was named a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship by President Obama.
In 2018, Stripe, directed by Patrick and John Collison, contributed $1 million to California YIMBY, a pro-housing development lobbying organization. On June 29, 2020, Patrick criticized the Chinese governments treatment of Uighurs by tweeting: "As a US business (and tech) community, I think we should be significantly clearer about our horror at, and opposition to, the atrocities being committed by the Chinese government against its own people".
In 2020, Patrick founded Fast Grants with Tyler Cowen, to accelerate COVID-19-related science.
In November 2018, Patrick Collison published an article in The Atlantic with Michael Nielsen, titled "Science is Getting Less Bang for its Buck." They argued that extra investment in science has not delivered commensurate output. In July 30, 2019, Patrick Collison and Tyler Cowen, an Economics professor at George Mason University published the piece "We Need a New Science of Progress: Humanity needs to get better at knowing how to get better" in The Atlantic. The opinion piece argued for a new academic discipline called "Progress Studies," which would study the cultural and institutional conditions that lead to the most progress and higher standards of living.