While it may not always be easy, imagine sharing career passion and workplace with your partner! In the name of love and technology, (and Valentine’s Day) we decided to look for couples who combine personal life and business. Here’re five startups co-founded and run by couples.
1. Jessica Livingston & Paul Graham, Y Combinator
Paul Graham and his then-girlfriend Jessica Livingston created Y Combinator in 2005 together with co-founders Robert Morris and Trevor Blackwell. Having funded about 2000 startups, Y Combinator is now the largest startup accelerator in the world. Companies like Airbnb, Stripe, Dropbox, etc. came out of Y Combinator.Graham and Livingston admit that they treated Y Combinator just like another project and never thought it would grow into this big thing. When asked about combining marriage and business, Paul said that his wife Jessica is Y Combinator’s most powerful weapon.
2. Julia & Kevin Hartz, Eventbrite
Eventbrite, one of the world’s most used event management and ticketing platforms, was founded by Julia and Kevin Hartz in 2016, just before the couple got married. Julia is now the CEO, while Kevin took the role of the executive chairman. The third co-founder, Renaud Visage, is the company’s CTO. In 2018, Eventbrite went public with its biggest shareholder now being Tiger Global Management with Sequoia Capital. Eventbrite's revenue is estimated to be $291.6 million. When asked how the couple managed to build a successful company together, Julia said that marriage has only made their business partnership stronger.
3. Rashmi Sinha & Jonathan Boutelle, SlideShare
College buddies Rashmi Sinha and Jon Boutelle founded SlideShare together with Rashmi’s brother Amit Ranjan. They aimed to create a platform that would work like YouTube for PowerPoint presentations. The team built SlideShare in just 6 months and launched the product in 2006. The startup was acquired by LinkedIn in 2012 for over $100 million, but Rashmi remains its CEO until today, while her husband holds the CTO position. SlideShare has over 60 million monthly visitors.Rashmi admits that it’s difficult not to discuss work with Jon when they’re home, but feels very lucky they both share a passion for the product.
4. Adi Tatarko & Alon Cohen, Houzz
An online platform for house design and renovation platform Houzz was founded by Adi Tatarko and Alon Cohen after the couple had failed to find the right professionals for their own home remodeling. 11 years later, Houzz has 1000+ employees and over 40 million monthly users. The company has raised over $48 million in funding.
Needless to say that the power couple of Adi and Alon has proved that teamwork can bring you a fortune. In one of the interviews, Adi said that the success of Houzz has only made her marriage happier.
5. Margaret Rimek & Serhii Yezdin, Pix
Pix, the world’s first customizable backpack, with Ukrainian co-founders has made buzz internationally over the last few years. The startup raised over $350k on Indiegogo and Kickstarter and launched full-scale manufacture in China. Originally, Pix’s team consisted of Ivan Kaunov, Former CTO and Serhii Yezdin, CMO. Margaret Rimek joined the team in 2018 to become the startup’s CEO.
Rimek and Yezdin met at the university, they both have a background in marketing and had worked as digital marketers before Pix.