Nirav Tolia is the co-founder and former CEO of Nextdoor, a hyperlocal social networking platform for neighborhoods. The technology entrepreneur was born in 1973 in Texas to an Indian immigrant couple. He attended Stanford University, from which he received a Bachelor's degree in English Literature. He worked at Yahoo! before turning to entrepreneurship.
He then went on to co-found Epinions, a website that featured product reviews from users. Tolia served as the company's CEO and later COO, when it was acquired by Shopping.com. The company then went public and was later acquired by eBay. Following this business venture, Tolia and his friends founded Nextdoor in 2008. In July 2018, Tolia announced plans to retire from his position as CEO and take on a chairman role on the company’s board.
In an e-mail to Nextdoor's employees, Tolia wrote:
"Just over eight years ago, I was blessed to be part of a group of seven friends who conceived of the idea behind Nextdoor. We were a tight-knit, ambitious group of co-founders who believed deeply in the power of community and dedicated ourselves to helping neighbors everywhere create stronger, safer, happier places to call home. Yet as Nextdoor evolves, the role of the CEO needs to evolve as well."
The technology entrepreneur and executive establishes and leads early-stage, consumer Internet companies. His areas of specialty include online community, user-generated content, social networking, and e-commerce. He has served as advisor and investor to early-stage internet companies like Zillow (Nasdaq: ZG), SurveyMonkey (Nasdaq: SVMK), Quip, Minted, Quora, Stack Exchange, Polyvore (acquired by Yahoo!), Doctor on Demand, Simply Hired, RealSelf, WiFast, SAY Media, Pro.com, HouseParty InstaEDU, IfOnly, Jawbone, Web of Trust, OrderAhead, Bottlenotes, aSmallWorld, StepUp Commerce (acquired by Intuit) and Trigo (acquired by IBM).
Before co-founding Nextdoor, Nirav co-founded Fanbase, a virtual almanac of pro and college athletes. He served as an entrepreneur in residence at Benchmark Capital. Before Shopping.com, Nirav was the co-founder and chief executive officer of Epinions, a website focusing on the mainstream use of online community and user-generated content. Over a four-year period, he raised $45 million in venture financing and oversaw its 2003 merger with DealTime. He began his career as an employee of Yahoo, working in the production and marketing departments. Nirav also co-founded and served as president of Round Zero, a non-profit organization and networking forum for Silicon Valley entrepreneurs.