Maven Growth Network

Maven Ventures is honored to have assembled a team of mentors who are simply the best and brightest minds in the consumer growth space who’ve helped to build some of the largest Internet and mobile consumer brands (see logos below). In addition to this select group of the best consumer growth experts in Silicon Valley, a few other select expert mentors have relevant skills to help startups at the very early stages in fundraising, product, UI/UX, and scaling.

Lightspeed Venture Partners, Living Social
After several years as a Partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners, Aaron is now working on his own endeavour again. He was a co-founder and former CTO of LivingSocial, where he lead the growth team that grew membership to 80M customers around the world. He also grew the team from 4 to 4,000 employees across 20+ countries and the company to billions in revenue.
Uber, Twitter, Afterpay Touch
Akash Garg is the CTO and VP of Product at Afterpay Touch. Previously, he lead the mobile and web platform teams at Uber. Prior to Uber, he was Director of the Growth & International teams at Twitter, where he helped drive tens of millions of active users to the platform. Prior to Twitter, Akash co-founded hi5, one of the early social networking leaders, and was the company’s original technical visionary and CTO. Having helped hi5 achieved a user base of over 250M registered members, Akash is one of the foremost experts in the field of consumer viral marketing. Akash graduated with a BS and MS in Computer Science from Stanford University.
Andreessen Horowitz, Uber
Andrew is a General Partner at Andreessen Horowitz. Most recently he was the lead of driver growth at Uber. In addition to his professional roles, he’s a writer and entrepreneur focused on mobile products, metrics, and user growth. He is an advisor/investor for tech startups including AngelList, AppSumo, Barkbox, Cardpool (acq. by Safeway), Frankly (an SK Planet co.), Gravity (acq. by AOL), Grovo, Kiva, Mocospace, Product Hunt, Qualaroo, Qik (acq. by Skype), Secret, Wanelo, and ZenPayroll. Previously, he was an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Mohr Davidow Ventures, a Silicon Valley-based firm with $2B under management. Prior to MDV, Andrew was director of product marketing at Audience Science, where he started up the ad network business that today reaches over 380M uniques.
Facebook, Twitter, Quora, Wealthfront, Unusual Ventures
Andy is one of the leading consumer growth experts. He was an early member of the Facebook growth & engagement team where he helped grow the membership from 100M to 500M. He then led the Twitter growth & engagement team, where he helped grow the membership from 40M to 140M. Andy was the product manager of user growth at Quora and Director of Growth & Revenue at Wealthfront. Today he is a partner at Unusual Ventures. In addition to his growth and Internet marketing expertise, Andy also has deep product management experience.
Homejoy, Lolapps
Annie Chang is a growth and user experience oriented product leader. Annie most recently served as Head of Product at Homejoy, one of the fastest growing startups in YCombinator history. Previously, Annie Co-founded Lolapps, a leading Facebook games and apps company. She designed the Lolapps Quiz Creator and Gift Creator user-generated application platforms, reaching over 100M users worldwide. Prior to co-founding Lolapps, Annie has held various technology roles at companies including Adobe (Advanced Technology Lab), SquareTrade, and BitTorrent. Annie holds a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from University of California, Berkeley. Annie was named one of the Most Influential Women in Technology by Fast Company (2010), Tech Founder to Watch in Huffington Post (2011), and Female Founder to Watch in Forbes (2012).
Facebook, Pinterest, Maveron
Cat Lee is the co-founder and COO of Pace Groups Inc. She was previously a partner at Maveron, and prior to Maveron she was Head of Culture at Pinterest, leading strategy and programs to codify and develop a culture that helps people discover and do what they love. She joined Pinterest as an early employee and Product Manager in 2012. Prior, she led the Global Marketing team focused on Partners/Advertisers as Pinterest grew revenue by nearly 3x. She also served as Head of Growth and helped build the cross-functional growth product, design, and eng teams as Pinterest scaled to reach more than 100 million monthly active users worldwide. Before joining Pinterest in 2012, she worked on the Facebook Platform team and led Developer Tools & Experience. She holds an MBA from the University Michigan and a BS Computer Science degree from Stanford University.
Facebook, Lyft, Stackbit
Dan is now co-founder and CPO at Stackbit, empowering developers and designers to build the modern web. He was previously a product manager leading driver acquisition at Lyft. He’s an expert at bringing high-end technology to user-facing products in a natural, clear, and delightful way. Previously he was leading the people tagging products team at Facebook where he focused on enhanced photo experiences for people in emerging markets. Dan joined Facebook through the acquisition, where he headed product management and business development, working on consumer applications like the real-time face recognition camera KLIK and the company’s API serving a community of 60K developers. Before that, Dan was the founding CEO of BloggersBase, a content discovery platform that was funded by investors Yossi Vardi and Jeff Pulver. Dan holds a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from the Weizmann Institute of Science and started his career as a software engineer developing complex automotive cad/cam software and fault tolerant aircraft maintenance systems.
Bebo, Dropbox, Facebook
Throughout his career, Darius Contractor has moved up the entire Silicon Valley stack from Programmer to Angel Investor. In the process, he’s learned about viral, scaling, agile management, rapid iteration, and the sweet spot between what works and what is possible. He’s currently the Head of Growth at Airtable. Previously, he was the Head of Growth for Facebook Messenger, and a growth engineering manager at Dropbox. His other former experiences include CEO of, VP of Engineering at Bebo (acq. by AOL), and PM/Senior Eng at (acq. by Monster). He focuses on building the right product as simply as possible, get-it-done engineering, and having fun. Darius earned his BS in Computer Science at Stanford University, and occasionally blogs at
Instacart, Wealthfront, Linkedin
Elliot Shmukler is the Founder and CEO of Anomalo, the easiest way for users to validate and document all the data coming into their warehouse. Formerly, Elliot was the VP of Product at Instacart and an accomplished Silicon Valley “growth hacker,” having led the strategy and execution behind LinkedIn’s growth from 20M to more than 200M members. At LinkedIn he restarted the company’s work on growth in 2008, starting as the sole product manager on the Growth team and ultimately growing the team to 20+ members. He ended his time at LinkedIn as a Sr. Director of Product Management, where in addition to Growth, he also oversaw much of the consumer product experience, including Profile, Search, Endorsements, and People You May Know. Previously, Elliot held technical and leadership roles at eBay,, Sombasa Media, and Microsoft. Today he is working on launching a new business in stealth. Elliot holds an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he was an Arjay Miller scholar, and holds a BA magna cum laude in Computer Science from Harvard University.
YCombinator, Voxer, airbnb
Gustaf Alstromer is one of the leading experts in consumer mobile growth and is currently a Partner at YCombinator. Most recently, he was the Product Manager of Mobile Growth at Airbnb, one of the fastest growing consumer startups today. Previously, Gustaf was the Head of Growth at Voxer where he helped the company acquire tens of millions of customers and grow to the 12th most downloaded app worldwide in 2012. He also founded a startup that he launched out of YC in 2007 that he grew to more than 1M members.
Robinhood, Greylock, Facebook, Twitter
Josh Elman is currently a Product Leader (check Josh’s twitter for description) at Apple. Most recently, Josh was the VP of Product at Robinhood and formerly at Partner at Greylock. Over the past 15 years, Josh has worked in product and engineering roles at some of the leading companies in social, commerce, and media. Prior to Greylock, Josh was a product lead for growth and relevance at Twitter, and helped Twitter grow its active user base by nearly 10x. Before Twitter, Josh worked on the platform at Facebook and led the launch of Facebook Connect. Earlier in his career, Josh led product management for Zazzle, was part of the early team at LinkedIn focused on growth and jobs, and led product and engineering for RealJukebox and RealPlayer at RealNetworks. Josh holds a BS in Symbolic Systems with a focus on Human Computer Interaction from Stanford University.
TechCrunch, Business Insider, Psychology Today
Nir Eyal writes, consults, and teaches about the intersection of psychology, technology, and business. Nir founded and sold two companies since 2003 and has taught the “Using Neuroscience to Influence Human Behavior” course as a Lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Nir is the author of the best-selling book Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products and is an advisor to several Bay Area start-ups and incubators. In addition to blogging at, Nir is a contributing writer for TechCrunch, Business Insider, and Psychology Today.
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