Vlad Tenev

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
(Redirected from Vladimir Tenev)
Vladimir Tenev
Tenev in 2016
Born (1987-02-13) February 13, 1987 (age 36)
NationalityAmerican, Bulgarian
EducationStanford (BA)
UCLA (dropped out)
Known forCo-founder, Robinhood

Vladimir Tenev (Bulgarian: Владимир Тенев; born 13 February 1987) is a Bulgarian-American entrepreneur who is the co-founder (with Baiju Bhatt) and CEO of Robinhood, a US-based financial technology services company.

Early life[edit]

Tenev was born in Bulgaria, and his parents migrated to the U.S. when he was five.[1] His parents both worked for the World Bank.[2] He attended Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology[3] in Fairfax County, Virginia.

He earned a degree in mathematics from Stanford University, where he met Baiju Bhatt.[4] He studied for a mathematics PhD at UCLA, but dropped out to work with Bhatt.[2][5]


In 2010, Tenev and Bhatt started a high-frequency trading software company called Celeris. By January 2011 they abandoned it to create Chronos Research, which sold low-latency software to other trading firms and banks.[6]

In 2013, Tenev and Bhatt co-founded the trading platform Robinhood.[4] In 2015, Robinhood launched its mobile app to the public.[7] Following a funding round in May 2018 which increased Robinhood's valuation to $6 billion, Tenev and Bhatt became billionaires.[4][8]

In November 2020, Tenev became the sole CEO of Robinhood, having previously shared the co-CEO title with Bhatt.[9]

In July 2021, Robinhood went public via an initial public offering at a $32 billion valuation.[10]

GameStop short squeeze[edit]

Tenev defended Robinhood's decision to prevent users from buying stock or options in a variety of securities, notably GameStop, during the GameStop short squeeze;[11][12][13][14] the decision had sparked widespread criticism from users of the app as well as politicians in both major American parties.[15]

On January 28, 2021, Robinhood was among a number of brokerages that halted users from buying stock or options in GameStop and the other heavily shorted-securities.[16]

On February 18, 2021, Tenev testified before the United States House Committee on Financial Services regarding Robinhood's role during the GameStop short squeeze.[17][18] Tenev came under criticism from members of both parties and was criticized for struggling to provide answers to a number of questions.[19][20][21]

His testimony explained that Robinhood’s decision to halt securities was driven by a need to meet federal clearinghouse deposit requirements, and refuted a number of theories that accused Robinhood of colluding with hedge funds during the squeeze.[22]

In its July 2021 Form S-1 filing with the SEC, Robinhood disclosed that the US Attorney's Office had executed a search warrant for Tenev's cell phone as part of a probe into the GameStop short squeeze.[23][24][25]


Year Awards Category Result Ref.
2016 Forbes 30 Under 30 Young Traders Won [26]
2022 Forbes 30 Under 30 Hall of Fame [27]

Other awards[edit]

He was invited to be the keynote speaker at UCLA's 2019 Math Commencement Ceremony.[28]

Personal life[edit]

Tenev is married to Celina A. Tenev, notably a Co-Founder of an emergency health service, Call9.[29] The pair have one daughter.[30]

In popular culture[edit]

Tenev is portrayed by Sebastian Stan in the 2023 film Dumb Money, a drama about the short squeeze.[31]


  1. ^ "The founders of Robinhood, a no-fee stock-trading app, were initially rejected by 75 venture capitalists — now their startup is worth $1.3 billion". Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Vlad Tenev, 28". Forbes. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  3. ^ Thomas Jefferson HS. "Thomas Jefferson HS". Twitter.
  4. ^ a b c "Robinhood Founders Are Billionaires in Silicon Valley Minute". Bloomberg News. 11 May 2018. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  5. ^ Ongchoco, David (12 August 2015). "Startup Insider: The Story Behind Stock Trading App Robinhood and Its One Million-Person Waitlist". HuffPost. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  6. ^ "Win the Stock Market with Crowd Sourced Advice from New App Robinhood". 18 April 2013.
  7. ^ "Online Brokerage Robinhood Will Offer Bitcoin And Ethereum Trading In February". Forbes. 25 January 2018.
  8. ^ "Meet the 11 new tech billionaires that emerged in 2018". Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  9. ^ "This app completely disrupted the trading industry". CNN. 13 December 2019.
  10. ^ "Robinhood valued at $32 billion after selling shares in IPO at $38 per share". CNBC. 28 July 2021.
  11. ^ "Robinhood CEO says limited trade to protect firm and customers". Reuters. 2021-01-29. Retrieved 2021-01-29.
  12. ^ "Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev speaks out on decision to restrict trading on GameStop and other stocks". CNBC. 2021-01-29. Retrieved 2021-01-29.
  13. ^ "Robinhood CEO Says Trading Limits Will Protect Firm, Customers". Bloomberg.com. 2021-01-29. Retrieved 2021-01-29.
  14. ^ Robinhood CEO speaks on controversy after GameStop stock chaos - CNN Video, 29 January 2021, retrieved 2021-01-29
  15. ^ "Robinhood founder Vlad Tenev says app blocked GameStop buys to "protect investors"". Newsweek. 2021-01-28. Retrieved 2021-01-29.
  16. ^ "Robinhood restricts trading in GameStop, other names involved in frenzy". CNBC. 2021-01-28.
  17. ^ Popper, Nathaniel (18 February 2021). "Grilled in the hearing, Robinhood's chief apologizes for limiting GameStop trades". The New York Times. Retrieved February 18, 2021.
  18. ^ Collins, Eliza (February 18, 2021). "Who Are Keith Gill and Other Key Players at the GameStop Hearing?". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 18, 2021.
  19. ^ Popper, Nathaniel; Phillips, Matt (2021-02-18). "In GameStop Saga, Robinhood Is Cast as the Villain". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-02-19.
  20. ^ "Under fire, Robinhood CEO apologizes to Congress for restricting trading". NBC News. 18 February 2021. Retrieved 2021-02-19.
  21. ^ Sorkin, Andrew Ross; Karaian, Jason; Merced, Michael J. de la; Hirsch, Lauren; Livni, Ephrat (2021-02-19). "'Something Very Wrong Happened Here'". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-02-19.
  22. ^ "GameStop hearing: Robinhood founder defends halt to trading". TheGuardian. 2021-02-18.
  23. ^ Kay, Grace. "Robinhood's IPO filing reveals the US Attorney's Office executed a search warrant for CEO Vlad Tenev's cell phone". Business Insider. Retrieved 2021-07-05.
  24. ^ Sigalos, MacKenzie (2021-07-01). "Feds seized Robinhood CEO's phone as part of GameStop trading probe". CNBC. Retrieved 2021-07-05.
  25. ^ Westbrook, Jesse (July 1, 2021). "Robinhood Says U.S. Demanded Access to CEO Tenev's Phone Records". Bloomberg.
  26. ^ Vardi, Nathan. "30 Under 30 Finance: The Top Young Traders, Bankers And Dealmakers". Forbes. Retrieved 2021-07-12.
  27. ^ "Vlad Tenev". Forbes. 28 March 2022.
  28. ^ "2019 Math Commencement Keynote Speaker: Vladimir Tenev". UCLA. Retrieved 7 April 2020.
  29. ^ "Call9: Modernizing Emergency Care". Center for Health Technology Hunter College. 2019-05-15. Retrieved 2022-03-23.
  30. ^ Garcia, Ahiza (2017-09-08). "Robinhood co-founders want everyone in the stock market". CNNMoney. Retrieved 2022-03-23.
  31. ^ "'Dumb Money' First Look: The GameStop Stock Frenzy Is Now a Movie". Vanity Fair. 2023-06-21. Retrieved 2023-10-18.

External links[edit]