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General Information



Harvard University, BA
Computer Science
Harvard University, MS
Computer Science

Current Companies


Former Companies

CEO & co-founder
SVP Business Development
Strategic Advisor
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Ali Partovi

Based in San Francisco, Ali is an angel investor, startup advisor, and serial entrepreneur. Ali is also a co-founder of computer education non-profit, and an active investor in sustainable food systems.

Ali co-founded and sold two high-profile startups: iLike, acquired by MySpace in 2009, and LinkExchange, acquired by Microsoft for $265 million in 1998. His portfolio as an investor / advisor has included such successes as Zappos, Facebook, and DropBox, as well as newer ventures such as Viagogo and OPOWER (see complete Partovi portfolio). As a visionary, he was among the first people to see the potential of the Facebook Platform (in 2007), and among the earliest to grasp the business opportunity of search (in 1997). His current passion is sustainable food and agriculture, based on his articles Food is the New Frontier in Green Tech and Hacking the Food System: Focus on the Supply Chain, and related angel investments in Farmigo and BrightFarms, and serves on the board of school food non-profit FoodCorps.

Relevant videos: “What Most Schools Don’t Teach” (video below) “Myspace exec goes rogue” (video below) “Hackley Commencement Speech” (video below) “Bono (U2): Wave of Sorrow interview and song” (video below)

Ali co-founded iLike with his twin brother, Hadi, serving as CEO and President respectively. They created iLike in an effort to reinvent, which Ali ran after acquiring the assets of the company from the original owners. iLike created the first successful application on the Facebook Platform, which remains the most popular music app on Facebook today. In 2009, Myspace acquired iLike, and Ali served as Head of Business Development at MySpace until transitioning to a strategic advisory role in April 2010.

Ali originally established himself as an entrepreneur by co-founding LinkExchange, which was acquired by Microsoft for $265 million in 1998. From 1998-2000, Ali worked at Microsoft and created “Keywords,” a pilot project to develop pay-for-placement, keyword-targeted text ads on alongside MSN Search results (essentially equivalent to Google AdWords, but many years earlier). Ali left Microsoft when the Keywords pilot program was shut down.

Ali also co-founded “DrinkExchange,” a monthly social event that spread from San Francisco to Washington, London, Tokyo, and Sydney.

Recent Milestones


Company Date Round Size Participants
Hampton Creek Foods 2/2014Series B$23M12
Vamo 7/2013Convertible Note$1.6M24
FiveStars Loyalty 8/2012Series A$14.5M6
Practice Fusion 6/2012Series C$34M11
Practice Fusion 1/2012Venture Round$2M3
Practice Fusion 9/2011Venture Round$6M9
Familiar 5/2011Seed2
Thinkfuse 3/2011Angel$520k9
Opzi 9/2010Angel$1M9
Thumbtack 6/2010Angel$1.2M14
BOKU 6/2009Series A$13M5
VigLink 6/2009Seed$800k8
Dropbox 9/2008Seed$1.2M4
BlueKai 4/2008Series A$3.2M4
WideOrbit 2/2008Series C$14.5M6
Opower 8/2007Series A$1.7M4
Causes 1/2007Series A$2.35M4
Break Media 3/2006Series B2
Flixster 2/2006Angel$175k3
Viagogo 10/2005Angel2
Fonality 6/2005Series A$800k2
Edusoft 2/2002Angel$1M3
iLike 1/2002Angel$700k4
2Web Technologies 12/2001Angel2
Zappos 1/2001Angel2
Tellme 6/1999Series A$6M3



MySpace YourSpace Video

Added: 10/15/09

Commencement Speech: Hackley School 2008

Added: 7/17/13

“Wave of Sorrow” Bono interview (recorded on a Nokia camera phone!)

Added: 7/17/13

“What Most Schools Don’t Teach” - launch video

Added: 7/17/13


  1. Plant-Based Food Startup Hampton Creek Foods Raises $23M Round Led By Horizons Ventures ( [edit]
  2. Facebook Veteran Ari Steinberg’s New Startup Vamo Taps Big Data To Book You Cheap And Easy Travel ( [edit]
  3. FiveStars Raises $13.9M in Series A Funding ( [edit]
  4. Practice Fusion Pulls In $34M Series C Led By Artis To Crush The Other Electronic Medical Record Startups ( [edit]
  5. Practice Fusion Raises Additional $2M in Funding ( [edit]
  6. Practice Fusion Announces New Investors Helping to Drive Health Tech Innovation ( [edit]
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  10. Well-known angels back local services startup ( [edit]
  11. BOKU Receives $13M Funding From Benchmark Capital, Index Ventures and Khosla Ventures ( [edit]
  12. VigLink Raises $800K To Take Hassle Out Of Affiliate Programs ( [edit]
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  14. BlueKai Raises $3.2 Million For Marketing Data Exchange ( [edit]
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  17. Project Agape, formerly known as Philotic, raises $2.35M, for good causes ( [edit]
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  23. Announces New CEO and Business Strategy ( [edit]
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  26. EDGAR [edit]
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Last Edited 4/2/14

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