The best partnerships are ones where you understand each other on a deep level. That means being present for founders, both as they face the struggles of willing a business into existence and being a human.
No need to fit a mold
I learned from an early age that the entrepreneurial spirit transcends generational and geographical boundaries. Growing up in Winnipeg, Canada, I was surrounded by successful entrepreneurs who were cut from a different cloth than the typical tech founder. They tended to be people from humble backgrounds who made an impact through sheer perseverance. As a kid, I’d spent my summers starting businesses.
During college I realized that software is the entrepreneurial opportunity for my generation. I joined Facebook as a product manager and helped spin off Messenger as a standalone app and launch the AI bot platform.
At Greylock, I try to combine both of these formative experiences. I look for potential in entrepreneurs from non-traditional backgrounds. And I seek to make bold bets on tech that can shape the world.
A new vision for AI
I joined Facebook in the wake of the Arab Spring, a moment where society was still optimistic on the impact of social media giving individuals a voice. Today we’re facing a similar moment with artificial intelligence. AI has the potential to meaningfully augment our work and our lives. I’m extremely optimistic that it isn’t a threat to jobs overall. On the contrary, I believe AI will create an explosion in demand, in part, because the cost to serve customers in a personalized way is going to go down significantly. I wrote about the three greatest opportunities I see for product-obsessed founders to build category defining AI companies.
Advisors that don’t get in the way
As an advisor to founders, I view my role as an accelerant to their trajectory. We partnered with the AI-powered storytelling startup Tome, for example, since the very beginning. CEO Keith Peiris and I had worked together at Facebook, and one day he told me he wanted to start his own company. We bought a whiteboard at Staples and spent the next few months iterating on ideas and building prototypes. My goal was not to force any single idea on him.
Instead, I helped him to zero in on the things he was naturally passionate about and to think through how to turn those into a business. Along the way, I introduced him to his co-founder Henri Liriani, helped with their first engineering hires, led their seed round, and joined the board. Today, Tome has surpassed over 10M users in just 9 months since launch.
In the News
Privacy and Scalability for Web3
Our Investment in Espresso Systems
Persuasion Through Stories
Our Investment in Tome
Digital Home Ownership
Our Investment in Pine
Exchange Infrastructure for the Internet
Our Investment in 0x
Fintech’s AI Moment
Backing the Gold Miners
Bringing DeFi Lending Mainstream
Crypto's Potential to Unlock a Faster, Cheaper, Safer Lending System