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Hack To Start
Episode 180

Tom Levesque

Co-founder Rey.ai

Listen to this episode on iTunes, Stitcher, & Google Music

Tom Levesque is the Co-founder at Rey.ai. Tom is a Software Developer turned Product Manager. After graduating and working with a local startup in Waterloo, Tom decided to move to the valley where he ended up joining Wildfire before it was acquired by Google. Before he’d even graduated as a Software Developer from the University of Waterloo, Tom had found an interest in Product Management. He then joined a series of startups in Canada, Silicon Valley and the UK, including Wildfire (which was acquired by Google), VigLink (where he helped raised a $20M Series B round) and more. Today, he’s the cofounder and developer of Rey.ai, an AI based email platform that’s redefining our conception of a “social network”. Tom joins us to share his story, how he got into tech & startups, how he approaches building products, what he’s currently working on with Rey.ai, and much more.

Main Objectives For This Episode

  • Learn more about how Tom got into Product Management & Startups
  • Learn more about what it's been like building startups in Silicon Valley, the UK, and Toronto
  • Learn more about why Tom is working on redefining Social Networking with Rey.ai
  • And more!

Episode Overview

Tom Levesque is the Co-founder at Rey.ai.

Tom is a Software Developer turned Product Manager. After graduating and working with a local startup in Waterloo, Tom decided to move to the valley where he ended up joining Wildfire before it was acquired by Google.

Before he’d even graduated as a Software Developer from the University of Waterloo, Tom had found an interest in Product Management.

He then joined a series of startups in Canada, Silicon Valley and the UK, including Wildfire (which was acquired by Google), VigLink (where he helped raised a $20M Series B round) and more.

Today, he’s the cofounder and developer of Rey.ai, an AI based email platform that’s redefining our conception of a “social network”.

Tom joins us to share his story, how he got into tech & startups, how he approaches building products, what he’s currently working on with Rey.ai, and much more.


Some Of The Questions We Ask

1:59
Can you tell us more about yourself - where are you from and what did you study?

2:28
So where did your passion for tech and entrepreneurship come from?

4:56
So how did that first experience lead deeper into what you ended up doing in Silicon Valley?

6:27
So what are the insight from that experience? What is that process like?

8:52
So you were then acquired by Google? What were some of the projects you had the chance to work on at Google?

12:55
So after your time at Google, you were on the lookout for new opportunities and ended up speaking with a company based out of the UK. Can you tell us more about that experience and how you ended up with another startup instead?

14:14
Today you’re the Co-Founder of Rey.ai. Can you tell us a bit more about what Rey is all about and what motivated you to start it?

17:24
So you’ve worked on several products over the course of your career. What are some of the biggest lessons you’ve learnt and mistakes you see other startups or product manager making?

19:09
What’s it been like building Rey so far?

24:03
What are some of the most recent apps or frameworks that you’ve either looked at for inspiration, use to build Rey.ai or that you’ve just downloaded and loved for your personal life?

25:12
Are there any resources that you’ve recently discovered or keep coming back to?

26:29
Do you have any final thoughts or advice to leave us with?


Here are some of the most important links and resources mentioned throughout the show.

Twitter Handles & Websites

Tom Levesque on LinkedIn
Rey.Ai on the Web
Tyler Copeland on Twitter
Franco Varriano on Twitter

Devices, Apps, and Books

Google Alerts
Innovator's Solution
Made To Stick

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