Aisha Counts

Joey Mota

Fleeing war and chasing new opportunities, more than a dozen Ukrainian entrepreneurs have landed in Los Angeles, finding an unexpected community in the city of dreams. These entrepreneurs have started companies that are collectively worth more than $300 million, in industries ranging from electric vehicle charging stations to audience monetization platforms to social networks.

Dot.LA spent an evening with this group of Ukrainian citizens, learning what it was like to build startups in Ukraine, to cope with the unimaginable fear of fleeing war, and to garner the resilience to rebuild.

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Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

As the tech industry reeled last year from a shaky macroeconomic environment, mass layoffs and poor stock performance, investors and venture capitalists began to tighten their purse strings. The proof is in the numbers: global venture funding slid from $681 billion to just $445 billion between 2021 and 2022, according to data from Crunchbase.

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