The biggest dream of many aspiring entrepreneurs is access to the so-called Billion Dollar Club, the fraternity where successful start-ups have bragging rights for snaring a billion dollars or more through private equity, an IPO or major corporate acquisition. While only a tiny percentage of upstarts can ever boast this claim to fame, the ones that do operate on high octane in their quest to capture market share in a huge and lucrative industry niche they aim to revolutionize.
It's that moxie that helps the founders woo venture capital and strategic partners from the get-go.
Read MoreFULL LIST: 2015 DISRUPTOR 50
These highfliers topped the list and include Moderna Therapeutics (No. 1), which raised $1 billion; Space X (No. 2), $1.2 billion; Bloom Energy (No. 3 ), $1.1 billion; Uber (No.4), $4.9 billion; Dropbox (No. 6), $1.1 billion; and SurveyMonkey (No. 14), $1.2 billion. Another seven companies raised more than $500 million, including Palantir Technology (No. 7) at $896.2 million.