Entrepreneur in Residence
I’m an entrepreneur with specific experience building online consumer marketplaces in emerging markets. I have deep knowledge of online classifieds globally, both through my experience co-founding and building the dominant regional player across the Middle East, and through the exposure to classifieds sites and strategy around the world via our investor. Zooming out, my interests and experience are in consumer facing businesses that have the opportunity to gain monopoly positions. Areas where I can help as a mentor are with strategy, HR, sales & marketing strategy/basics, and some product management.
In 2005, at age 24, my Co-Founder and I started dubizzle.com, a classifieds website in Dubai. The site was bootstrapped from our shared living room over a number of years. By the end of 2007 we moved into our first office and hired our first full-time employees. Over the following 6 years we grew to nearly 200 employees operating in the UAE and ten additional countries across the Middle East and North Africa. By the end of 2013 (when I left operations to return to Austin) dubizzle was the largest local site in the UAE (7th largest overall), and among the largest sites in numerous other MENA countries (notably Egypt, Lebanon and Oman). Dubizzle continues its rapid growth, and I remain a shareholder and board member.
Today I’m the co-founder of UnihornLabs here in Austin. It’s a lab where we experiment with our own ideas, invest where we see traction, and build teams of co-founders in our successful businesses. Our first two companies are Glossy, and Influence.