Semil Shah

Semil Shah is a venture advisor at Bullpen Capital and GGV Capital as well as an investor through a small fund called Haystack. He was previously involved in mobile product development, marketing, and distribution at Swell while working as a formal paid consultant to a variety of venture capital firms, focused on deal evaluation, due diligence, marketing, and special operations.

Shah is also a public speaker, an official contributor to TechCrunch, and TV show host for “In The Studio.” He also writes for Haywire and produces interviews to be aired on iTunes. Before moving to the Valley in 2010, Shah helped start a life sciences company (MegaCell Therapeutics) in Boston, wrote for Harvard Business Review, and worked for Harvard University and a non-profit organization. He was also employed as a cook at Bi-Rite Market and professional bartender in New York City.

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Latest from Semil Shah

  • Big Data Needs To Think Bigger

    Spend enough time in Silicon Valley, and of all the buzz words you’ll hear neatly tucked in with “graph,” “serendipity,” and “personalization” is one often uttered though, on the whole, not yet fully understood: “Big Data.” On the surface, everyone realizes the opportunity. Data is being generated at lightning speed, the cost of storing… Read More

  • The Next Mass Consumer Social Wave: Political Expression

    People always say things change fast in Silicon Valley. Here, and in other entrepreneurial communities around our country, ideas collide, companies form, money is injected, talent is allocated, and the pace of innovation churns. Entrepreneurship is so accessible, the best talent flock here to found companies like Google. Today, it’s tougher for those foreign entrepreneurs to get here in… Read More

  • What Is Quora’s Biggest Challenge?

    By now, everyone has an opinion of Quora and is waiting to see if their mom starts following them there, too. In the past week, in addition to winning the Crunchies award for best new startup, it is also the target of growing skepticism.  Well-circulated articles have been written about the company’s ascent. Katherine Boehret from the Wall Street Journal wrote a review in which she… Read More

  • The Thin Wedge Of Quora

    In 2010, a handful of mobile photo-sharing applications unleashed armies of handset users to snap pictures and instantly share them across multiple platforms and networks: Instagram growth exploded to become a Twitter for pictures; Picplz received generous funding, Path emerged from stealth mode, Occipital enabled 360-degree panoramic experiences, Foodspotting encouraged users to capture… Read More

  • Frequently Asked Questions About Quora

    The incredible growth of Quora has also led to an equally incredible growth in chatter, punditry, and analysis about the future of social networking. The opinions range from thought-provoking (“the knowledge network comes online”) to routine (“the new form of blogging”) to flatly illogical (“this is the next Twitter, Foursquare, or Wikipedia”). In reality… Read More

  • Twitter’s Golden Egg: Location

    Twitter’s Golden Egg: Location

    Twitter’s core strength—limiting posts to 140 characters—has created opportunities for other websites and apps to siphon off and capture users around activity that originated on Twitter. These new sites and services leverage Twitter’s distribution pipes, free of charge, offering little or nothing in return. In 2010, these common tweeting behaviors created opportunities… Read More