|Alma mater||Harvard University(A.B)
|Occupation||Partner at Sequoia Capital|
Early Career & Zappos
Lin holds a B.A. in Applied Mathematics from Harvard and a M.S. in Statistics from Stanford. While at Harvard, Lin met Tony Hsieh, the future CEO of Zappos. Hsieh first recognized Lin's business acumen while running a student-owned pizza parlor at Harvard. Lin, his best customer, was buying whole pizzas, splitting them into slices, and selling them for a profit. In 1996, Lin dropped out of a Ph.D program at Stanford to join Hsieh at LinkExchange as CFO. 18 months later LinkExchange sold to Microsoft for $265 million. Later, before joining Zappos, Lin was the VP of Finance and Business Development of Tellme Networks (MSFT). With Tony Hsieh he also co-founded Venture Frogs-an incubator and investment firm. Venture Fogs invested in a variety of tech and Internet startups, including Ask Jeeves, OpenTable, Tellme Networks, and Zappos.
From 2005 to 2010 Lin was an integral part of Zappos, taking the roles of Chairman, COO, and CFO. At Zappos Lin was "No. 2 in command", responsible for all financial, administrative, and warehouse operations. He was also responsible for company growth and scaling, bringing the company to its first profitable year in 2006 and to Amazon.com's acquisition of the company in 2009 for $1.2 billion. According to TechCrunch, "Hsieh made at least $214 million; Lin made at least $18 million, with the Venture Frogs shares netting an additional $163 million."
Sequoia Capital & Investments
TechCrunch has stated that Alfred has the "Midas touch", since "every company he’s worked for has been acquired, and the smallest deal was $265 million." Lin's $265 million deal happened at LinkExchange, which was sold to Microsoft for $265M when he was VP of Finance and Administration and was the first company he ever joined. Lin later helped Tellme Networks which was sold to Microsoft for $800m. After that, Lin helped from Zappos to later be acquired by Amazon for $1.2 billion. Lin has invested in Airbnb, Achievers, Stella & Dot, Houzz, Humble Bundle, Kiwi, Romotive, Moovit, Styleseat, Uber, and Cardpool (acquired by Blackhawk Networks), AppBistro / MMTG Labs (acquired by InMobi), and SalesCrunch (acquired by ClearSlide. He specializes in consumer internet, enterprise and mobile companies.
In 2013, Forbes named Lin as one of the "30 Most Influential People in Tech." Lin and his work have been profiled in national publications, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Harvard Business Review, CNBC, Forbes, BusinessWeek, and Fortune Magazine.
- Arrington, Michael "Alfred Lin Has The Midas Touch: The Man With $2 Billion In Acquisitions Under His Belt", TechCrunch, July 28, 2009.
- Arrington, Michael (April 9, 2010). "Alfred Lin To Leave Zappos, Join Sequoia Capital". TechCrunch.
- Rich, Motoko (April 8, 2011). "Why Is This Man Smiling?". New York Times.
- Manninen, JP (April 9, 2010). "These boots are made for walking: No. 2 executive leaves Zappos". VentureBeat.
- "Alfred Lin Zappos Profile". Zappos.com.
- "I Am CNBC Tony Hsieh Transcript". CNBC. August 15, 2007.
- Ritchie, Josh. "10 Questions with Zappos COO/CFO, Alfred Lin". BuySight.
- Lee, Tom.Venture Frogs Internet Restaurant Logs on to the San Francisco Scene. Asian Week. August 17, 2000.
- Nelson, Erik. Venture Frogs in a Cyber-Marsh. Profit Magazine. January 2000.
- FOWLER, NINA. "VIDEO: Sequoia Capital partner Alfred Lin on Zappos, Zalando and solving hard problems". Venture Village.
- Stone, Brad (July 22, 2009). "Amazon’s Expanding With Deal for Zappos". The New York Times.
- Wingfield, Nick (July 23, 2009). "Amazon Opens Wallet, Buys Zappos". Wall Street Journal.
- Rimm-Kaufman, Alan. "Alfred Lin: Zappos At Break-even Through 2005, Profitable in ’06 and ’07". RKG.
- Lacy, Sarah (July 27, 2009). "What Everyone Made from the Zappos Sale". TechCrunch.
- Cook, John (April 9, 2010). "Zappos COO Alfred Lin to leave for Sequoia Capital in early 2011". Puget Sound Business Journal.
- "Alfred Lin CrunchBase Profile". CrunchBase.
- Malik, Om. "Tellme Price – $800 Million, or More". Gigaom.
- Ha, Anthony (October 15, 2010). "UberCab raises $1.25M to end your futile search for taxis". VentureBeat.
- "SalesCrunch Gathers $1.4M From First Round, Accel And Angels". DowJones.com. January 12, 2011.
- "Bio: Alfred Lin", Sequoia Capital
- Thomas, Owen. "Airbnb Finally Lands The Zappos Veteran It's Eyed For Years". Business Insider.
- "Bloomberg Businessweek Profile". Bloomberg Businessweek.
- Prive, Tanya (January 7, 2013). "The 30 Most Influential People in Tech". Forbes.
- Chapman, Lizette. "VC in 2013: Sequoia’s Alfred Lin on Not Lamenting the ‘Series A Crunch’". Wall Street Journal.
- Greene, Rebecca. "Zappos Chairman Alfred Lin Asks HBS MBAs to Think Big, Follow Their Passion, and Pay Attention to Details". Harvard Business School.
- "Profile: Alfred Lin". Forbes.