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Kevin Systrom

Kevin Systrom

Co-Founder at Instagram

buildd tags

Started on the side Does code

Quick stats

$2.2B Net wealth 38 Yrs Age 2010 Year of founding


Product Marketer, Google 2010-2018 CEO & Co-Founder, Instagram


2006 Stanford University

Personal Information

Partner Nicole Systrom

The Spark

Kevin Systrom's story is the stuff of Silicon Valley dreams. At age 27, Systrom taught himself to code at nights & on weekends, while working in marketing at Nexstop. As a side-project, Systrom built the prototype of Burbn - a location-based app that allowed users to check in, post plans and share photos. A crucial turning point came when at a party, Systrom met a couple of venture capitalists and showed them the prototype, winning a coffee meet to discuss more. After the first meeting, Kevin Systrom quit his job to work full-time on Burbn and two weeks later, he convinced the same VCs (from Baseline Ventures & Andreesen Horowitz) to invest $500K.‍

The Pivot

After teaming up with Mike Krieger (fellow Stanford grad & web designer), Kevin Systrom realised the presence of similar apps in a crowded market, and hence decided to pivot to only photo-sharing. They decided to go the minimal route and stripped Burbn down to its bare features - sharing photos, liking & commenting - and thus, Instagram was born.‍

The Build

The iOS app was built in 8 weeks, and on Oct. 6, 2010, the day of the App Store launch, Instagram became the Top Free Photo-sharing app, gaining 25,000 users in single a day. Now, in the modern day age of fast internet, Instagram has grown from strength to strength.


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