Founder and CEO at
Harvest: $10,000,000+ revenue
Fertilizer: $50M-$199M raised
Orchard: funded by equity
Yield: $200,000,000+ valuation
Farmhands: 200-999 employees
Helpers: 500-1,999 part-time or volunteers
Nationality: American (USA)
Currently in: United States(New York, New York)
Seeds (story starters)
- First venture as a child
- Mentors or role models
- Smartest move ever
- Dumbest move ever
- Running out of money
- Natural disaster
- Personal injury
View Other Heroes
When the dotcom bubble burst, EVERY company with any linkage to the internet got thrown away.
At age 8, cornered the sticker album market around my school. In France, movie companies used to sell empty albums with storylines and one had to buy packets of stickers to fill things in. I quickly realized that some stickers were more valuable than others and bought all sticker boxes coming in to retailers, reselling stickers individually to my peers.
Mentors, Role Models, Inspirations:
I look to history for role models. My goal is to build something as lasting as what Edison or Ford did.
In 1994, I created cnn.com as an unsanctioned project within Turner Broadcasting and got fired for it. It brought me enough attention that I could land a job in the internet industry.
Moving into a financial firm in April 2008, only weeks before the financial crisis took hold. At the time, I was debating between going back to startup land or doing a final deal relating to internet payments (so I could be able to claim I had been involved in most internet payment backends in the world). I did the deal but ended up having to fight to keep it alive.
When the dotcom bubble burst, EVERY company with any linkage to the internet got thrown away. We were looking to raise money to help us build a platform that would allow individual creators (bloggers, etc.) to sell content to traditional publications. Because of the investment climate, we were forced to refocus the company to consulting and sold it 2 years later to a large financial firm.
I'd been sick for a while but travel and other commitments kept me from seeing a doctor. Eventually, things got so bad that I agreed to seeing a GI. He misdiagnosed me and things went from bad to worse over 3 months, when I finally decided to make a switch. Upon seeing the "second opinion" doctor, I ended up in the E.R. Turns out that I had a blockage in my intestine (as a result of Ulcerative Colitis) that had left 2 weeks' worth of food in my body. Had I not made it to the E.R. that day, my guts would have burst and I would have died of internal poisoning. The GI later told me that I was roughly 5-6 hours away from dying at that point. I've since learned to pay closer attention to my body and not treat it as merely a vehicle for my brain. I now exercise more frequently, eat a more balanced diet and make sure I get 6-7 hours of sleep a night. The net result is a more balanced schedule, a saner and healthier lifestyle that has made me a better entrepreneur.
I was in charge of the technology infrastructure for a large bank a year after 9/11. Then the lights went out... everywhere. The east coast was in a total blackout. The ATM network failed, and our server farm was running on gas generator. I had to get in a car with a co-worker and drive 75 miles to get some gas tanks so we could refill our oil generators in order to keep the data center alive.