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Daniel Graf, head of marketplace Uber, Swisspreneur Podcast

EP #5 – Daniel Graf: A Sillicon Valley Veteran

Daniel Graf (Uber)

November 15, 2016

8:46 – Launching a startup in 11 months
22:39 – Working at Google
32:26 – How to drive the company’s culture as a CEO
37:51 – What Switzerland can learn from Silicon Valley and Berlin
41:32 – What it takes to start a company nowadays

About Daniel Graf

Daniel joined Uber in 2015 as the Head of Marketplace, the team that works on Uber’s dynamic pricing model. Before joining Uber he did a short stint at Twitter as the Vice President of Consumer Product. Prior to Twitter Daniel was in charge of leading Google’s Maps & Local teams. After Apple ousted Google Maps from iOS in 2012, Daniel led the development of an award-winning Google mapping experience that shot to number one in the iTunes store. Fast Company recognized Daniel for this achievement as one of the Most Creative People in Business 2013. Prior to Google, Daniel was the CEO of Kyte, which he founded in 2005. Kyte became a leading platform for live and on-demand video content. Daniel sold Kyte to KIT Digital in 2011. Before Kyte, Daniel joined Philips Consumer Electronics in 2001 where he developed the world’s first Internet audio stereo system and the first wireless Home Entertainment System with Internet video services. In 1999 and 2000 he was the Chief Software Engineer of ReQuest Multimedia, an award-winning Consumer Electronics startup, based in New York. There he created the world’s first MP3 Hard Disk Jukebox, the predecessor to Apple’s “iPod”. Daniel earned a BS in Electrical Engineering from the Interstaatliche Hochschule für Technik Buchs (NTB) and an MS in Computer and Systems Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI).

Memorable Quotes

“Sometimes naiveté allows you to just go in and overcome challenges. If you know too much, you’re paralyzed.”

“Hiring the wrong person can really throw your whole company off track.”

“In the startup world, everything looks like such a great opportunity — but if you take on too much, you do everything half-baked.”

“I would bet 90% of the challenges you face in life are related to communication: miscommunication or lack of communication.”

“Nowadays it’s easier and less capital-intense than ever before to start a technology and information business.”

To listen to more episodes with former Googlers, check out our conversation with Alain Chuard.

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