Magic happens at the intersection of competences. I have three: markets, technology and data.
Straight out of university, I spent a decade at Simplex Asset Management, a hedge fund spun out of the legendary Salomon Brothers arbitrage desk. I was a programmer, quant analyst, bond trader, and the youngest ever portfolio manager at Simplex; while there, I built one of the industry’s first automated (“high-frequency”) trading systems for bond arbitrage. Thanks to this experience, I have expert-level knowledge of capital markets, quantitative finance and hedge fund strategies.
After Simplex, I co-founded Quandl with my friend Tammer Kamel. Quandl was created to address a problem I encountered time and again in my investing career: there’s an amazing amount of information in the world, but much of it is hard to find and hard to use. Quandl solves that.
Tammer and I started as two engineers building a prototype in a basement; grew our team to 50 people; raised 20M in financing from blue-chip Silicon Valley venture capital firms; created the category of “alternative data” for investors; gained essentially all of the world’s leading hedge funds as our customers; and were ultimately acquired by Nasdaq (NDAQ) in Canada’s largest tech exit of 2018. Thanks to this journey, I have strong knowledge of startup execution and the contemporary tech ecosystem.
At both Simplex and Quandl, my professional career has revolved around data: specifically, how sophisticated organizations can use data to gain scalable and sustainable competitive advantages. As a result I have broad and deep knowledge of the modern data economy.
While I believe in the power of markets, technology and data to make the world a better place, I’m also keenly aware of their limitations. Data can be biased; markets can be imperfect; technology can be flawed.
The optimist in me says that every inefficiency is an opportunity; the humanist in me cares for the individuals affected by these inequities. It’s important to strike a balance.