Starting a business is tough. I admire that founders have the courage to take the risk—to put pressure on their lives, both personally and professionally, in order to build something from nothing.
One of my role models is Richard Feynman. He was one of the brilliant scientists of our time and a great example of how we should learn, solve problems and engage others. He made physics simple and fun. His curiosity and passion for understanding things were both joyful and contagious.
I’m curious about everything. I’ve spent time on enterprise technology, but I’m also interested in gaming, fintech, quantum computing, you name it. If a business has the potential to disrupt how we live and work, I’m excited to learn about it.
I’m a gamer myself. When I was younger I won some local competitions in Casablanca, Morocco, where I grew up. I even coded some simple games using Unity.
My parents gave me my values. We didn’t have much, but they taught me to be honest and work hard—and to ignore anyone who told me I couldn’t achieve my goals.
I’ve read Japanese manga since I was little. I like that the protagonists always achieve their goals through perseverance and not through sheer luck.
Growing up, I knew that unless I could make it as a professional soccer player, my ticket out of Morocco was math. Our public schools didn’t have many resources, so I had to study on my own. But eventually, I got into École Polytechnique in France.
An internship changed the course of my career. I was building a machine-learning model for an advertising firm, but I was more interested in understanding the business. I was constantly asking, “Why?”
At Bain, we were obsessed with company culture. I realized it’s not about perks or off-site trips; it’s about seeing your employees as human beings, listening to their ideas and empowering them constantly.
At Silver Lake, I had the chance to see what best-in-class late-stage tech businesses look like. I will use everything I’ve learned to help founders in their journey.
Investing allows me to be part of the adventure. That’s especially fun with early-stage companies—where you’re not just optimizing profitability, but helping founders start something new and reshape an industry.
I was surprised that everyone I talked to was so humble and kind. From the outside in, Sequoia can be intimidating. It was refreshing to see that all these super successful people were also super nice.
Sequoia is all about “we.” Our leaders empower the next generation, and we’re truly part of the team.