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We're breeding unicorns

No, not that kind of unicorns. The tech kind of unicorns. Unicorns are defined as private start-ups estimated to be worth more than $1 billion (£641.7 million).

According to a note from investment bank Credit Suisse on Friday, the number of such companies, as well as their value, has exploded in the past six years.

In 2009 the total valuation ran to just a few billion dollars, and there were just four companies that fit the name. Now there are 124 unicorns, and the combined valuation runs to $468 billion (£300.33 billion) against a total valuation of $13 billion (£8.34 billion) in 2009.

That's a 3000 per cent expansion in the number of companies and a near-3500 per cent increase in the total valuation, UK's Business Insider says in a report.

What's even more interesting is the pace at which we're creating these unicorn start-up companies.

On average, so far this year we’ve created one unicorn every week.

For anyone interested, CB Insights has a complete list of private companies valued at $1 billion and above.

Among the unicorns is Slack - one of the fastest-growing business apps of all time and now worth an estimated $US2.8 billion, having raised $160 million (£102.2). Its direct competitor is now Facebook, with its Facebook for Work app, a social network built specifically for business.

It is estimated that the app will leave the beta status before the end of the year. It will be almost exactly like Facebook, but tweaked slightly to fit the corporate environment.