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A Letter to Immigrant Entrepreneurs by a Student Volunteer

Dear immigrant entrepreneurs,

I am writing this letter to express my admiration and support for your choice to make your dreams come true in a foreign country. As a Dream Venture Labs volunteer, I hope I can help you grow in my own small way. As you all know, starting a business is never easy, and even selling food at a street stall does not guarantee that you will attract enough customers right from the start. That's why having resilience, determination and entrepreneurial spirit are the basic qualities that every entrepreneur should have. Despite the challenges you may face along the way, perseverance creates opportunities for yourself and the community in which you live and work.

According to a research firm New American Economy (NAE) report, 45 percent of Fortune 500 companies (the 500 largest U.S. companies by revenue) were founded by immigrants or their children. According to the analysis, about 11 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs are immigrants. They come from 28 different countries and are located all over the world. One such representative, Hamdi Ulukaya, is the owner, founder, chairman and CEO of Chobani. Originally from eastern Turkey. His family led a nomadic life, raising sheep and goats and making cheese and yogurt for a living. When Ulukaya was in his early 20s, he was given the opportunity to come to the United States to study English and business. He then stumbled upon a closed yogurt factory in New York City, where he designed his own yogurt recipe inspired by the food from his hometown and founded Chobani in 2005. Less than five years later, Chobani became the number one selling Greek yogurt brand in the United States. As a dedicated philanthropist, Ulukaya signed the Giving Pledge and founded the Refugee Tent Partnership in 2016 to help end the global refugee crisis. He also serves on the boards of La Colombe Torrefaction LLC and Pathfinder Village. Many entrepreneurs like Hamdi Ulukaya in the U.S. have invariably gone on to use their resources to help more immigrant or refugee entrepreneurs with entrepreneurial dreams succeed.

As an immigrant entrepreneur, be confident that you have a unique perspective on the world and bring new thinking to the table. Embrace your diverse background and use it as a competitive advantage in business. Your ability to think differently, adapt quickly, and connect with communities will set you apart and enable you to make a lasting impact. Remember, while embracing your new home, stay connected to your roots, celebrate your heritage and share your culture with others. By doing so, you can foster understanding and build bridges between different communities, thus fostering a more inclusive society. As Hamdi Ulukaya said, "My mother used to make the most amazing yogurt," he has made his own mark by embracing his home culture. If you are looking for like-minded people, Dream Venture Labs is the place to meet people like you who are ready to realize their dreams through entrepreneurship. We are eager to help you with our platform. Lastly, I would like to express my appreciation for your contributions as immigrant entrepreneurs. You have inspired us all with your determination, passion and resilience. As you continue to tackle the challenges and opportunities of entrepreneurship, please know that you also trust us to do everything we can to help you. We believe in the ability of every immigrant entrepreneur to create positive change, and wish you success in all your future endeavors!


Student Volunteer at DREAM Venture Labs

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