Founder Forward • Episode 3

Webiny & Databricks:

Accelerating Adoption, Customer-Guided Growth, and Forging Powerful Partnerships

Hosted by Kate Barrett and Pete SonsiniMar 22, 2023

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In this episode, Webiny Co-Founder Sven Al Hamad speaks with host Kate Barrett about his path to founding the serverless CMS startup, gaining traction in a massive market, and solving real problems for users. Throughout the conversation, Databricks Co-Founder Ali Ghodsi and NEA's Pete Sonsini discuss the early challenges, big wins and defining moments that have shaped Databricks' ascent, sharing some great stories and sound advice from their decade-plus journey together.

Tune in to hear these founders talk about building open-source solutions that truly meet the needs of the communities and enterprises they serve, and how listening to customers can shape a company's path in unexpected and important ways.

"For me it's all about trust that you build with people around you. A lot of things just come down to that. The only way you can do that is by talking often and forging that relationship and being vulnerable both ways."

— Ali Ghodsi - Co-Founder & CEO, Databricks

Topics covered on todays episode

  • Winning mindshare in a crowded market

  • Why partnerships matter (and when to pursue them)

  • The value of truly listening to customers

  • Surviving and thriving in tough times

Guests on today's episode

Kate Barrett speaks with:


Sven Al Hamad


Founder and CEO

Sven Al Hamad is the Founder and CEO of Webiny, an open source serverless CMS that offers you all the enterprise-grade functionalities, while keeping your data within the security perimeter of your own infrastructure. In this episode, Sven chats with host Kate Barrett about his approach to gaining traction in a massive market, how challenges at the macro level shape aspects of the company-building journey and more.

Pete Sonsini speaks with:


Ali Ghodsi


Co-Founder and CEO

Ali Ghodsi is Co-Founder and CEO of Databricks, the data lakehouse architecture and AI company that allows users to collaborate on all of their data, analytics and AI workloads using one platform. On this episode, Ali chats with Databricks board member, Pete Sonsini about turning successful open-source project into a really big company, customer-centric product development, and the importance of relationships at every stage.