Henri has 20 years of experience as a serial entrepreneur focused on internet-related businesses and has particular expertise in relation to algorithmics and computer science. He is the founder of Bizrate.com / Shopzilla, acting as CTO until its sale in 2005 for US$569 million. He was designing flat models before they were called NoSQL, and led the creation of the first product-centric online search engine. He has been coaching entrepreneurs around the globe, and is often seen conducting workshops and training sessions. Henri holds a BA in mathematics and economics from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He still codes from Arduinos to iPhones, and prefers the Vim editor.
Hala co-founded Leap ventures in 2014 and has been a Managing partner with the firm since then. She has 20 years of experience in finance and entrepreneurship. She has been a portfolio manager for 12 years in European Equities at Comgest, a €20bn growth equity fund focused on investing in growth companies. During her time at Comgest, the fund grew about tenfold becoming a well established outperforming global growth fund.
Prior to that, she started Booleo, a telecom software business, later acquired as an internal solution by a client. Hala started her career in 1996 at Merril Lynch in London in mergers and acquisition. She is the founder and chair of the MIT Enterprise Forum of the pan-Arab region, an organization that promotes entrepreneurship and organises, among other things, the MIT Arab start-up competition since 2006. Hala also sits on the global board of the MIT Enterprise Forum and chairs the Arab Edition of the MIT technology review magazine. She is also an angel investor in start-up companies in the Middle East and Europe, and has launched a co-working space in Beirut called Coworking+961. She co-founded and chairs Ruwwad Lebanon, a non-profit organisation working on community development in disfranchised areas through education and grassroots organising. Hala graduated from HEC in France in 1997 with a Masters in Financial Economics and attended the Berkeley Haas School of Business, she holds an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Hervé has 20 years of experience as a serial entrepreneur and investor and has particular expertise in operations, scaling and monetization. Herve started his career in Paris by creating his first interactive agency and sold it to DDB Worldwide (part of the Omnicom group) in 1999. Since then he has been in charge of all of the digital activities of DDB in France (1500 employees). In 1999, Hervé also started his investment activities (including an investment in e-commerce venture Cashstore.fr, which was sold in 2010. Hervé co-founded and was previously the CEO of Diwanee, a Middle East digital media company. He is currently a lead mentor under the acceleration program at EuraTechnologies, a leading European business incubator.
Prior to Sara joining Leap in 2015 as an investment manager, Sara worked as an associate director at Endeavor, a global organization with a mission to select and grow high-impact businesses. Sara also worked as a financial and economic consultant at ECE Capital. Sara holds a BS in Economics from the American University of Beirut, a Master of International Affairs from SciencesPo the Institut d’Etudes Poliques de Paris, and a Master of Science in International Political Economy from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Audrey joined Leap Ventures in 2015 as an investment manager. Audrey began her career as an Associate at New York based Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP’s London offices, where she advised KKR and other private equity funds, their portfolio companies and major European companies on legal aspects of complex M&A and capital markets transactions, including $500 Mn refinancings of Virgin Media and NXP Semiconductors NV. Prior to joining Leap, Audrey also worked in the investment team of the EuroMena Funds, part of the Capital Trust Group, where her role included deal and fund sourcing, due diligence and monitoring. Audrey is a New York qualified attorney and holds an LLM from Columbia University, a M2 from University Paris 2 Pantheon-Assas and a Master from INSEEC Paris Business School.
Mada joined Leap as an investment associate in 2014. Prior to joining Leap, Mada was a consultant at Banque Du Liban. Mada started her career as an auditor at Pricewaterhousecooper for three years where she handled audits in multiple industries including banking, F&B, energy, and hospitality. Mada holds a BBA with an emphasis in accounting & an MBA from the American University of Beirut and is a Certified Public Accountant licensee from the State of New Hampshire USA.
Rita has seven years of experience in the management field. Prior to joining Leap, she served as assistant to the managing director at Afkar Architects for two years. Afterwards, she joined Ma.ven.s as assistant MD and recruitment specialist. Rita’s role in Leap Ventures focuses mainly on the management of the office in addition to assisting the team. Rita holds a BA in Sociology, Anthropology and Public Relations from the University of Saint Joseph – Beirut.