Blackbox believes that entrepreneurs are the core engine for global economic growth. Our mission is to bring motivated founders with great ideas from every corner of the world to Silicon Valley to learn from and connect with successful entrepreneurs, experienced venture capitalists and other resources to accelerate their global expansion. We believe it is possible to change the world whether you’re from Cupertino or Cameroon.

Our network of founders spans more than 50 countries and continues to grow—one relationship at a time. The alumni of Blackbox programs are defined by their willingness to support and promote fellow startup founders. We are fortunate to offer an incredibly diverse population of global entrepreneurs access to the Silicon Valley game changers, connect them with other global entrepreneurs and build one global ecosystem.


Fadi Bishara

Fadi’s vision is to accelerate the conditions for world peace through entrepreneurship. His in-depth knowledge and experience building successful startups in Silicon Valley and around the world have earned him the respect of founders, investors, and policymakers alike. Seeking to rethink the traditional accelerator model, Fadi founded Blackbox in 2010 with a commitment to serving entrepreneurs and expanding entrepreneurial opportunity in every corner  of the globe.

Prior to founding Blackbox, he was the Founder & CEO of techVenture, Inc., a talent search and recruitment firm building core teams for venture-backed high growth startups in Silicon Valley. During his last five years in this role, techVenture was retained by 41 startups in the San Francisco Bay Area. 33 of these startups -- such as Splunk, Bebo, Zynga, LalaMedia, and Tapulous -- have successfully exited, while the majority of the remaining companies are profitable and continue to grow.

Fadi is a frequent speaker at several global conferences, an active mentor with startup accelerators in various international hubs, and a venture advisor to several international investment funds. He served as an Advisory Board Member of the MIT/Stanford Venture Lab.

Fadi is originally from Hama, Syria, and immigrated to the United States in 1986.

Chad Kaul

Chad is a startup strategist with over a decade of experience in early stage venture. Since leaving private equity, he’s been an entrepreneur as a founder, co-founder, and founding team member. He has advised, consulted, and mentored over 60 startups backed by leading Silicon Valley venture capital firms like Sequoia, Founders Fund, Google Ventures, and other notable investors. His work has generated over $100M in funding and exits.

Prior to Blackbox, Chad led Startup Design Strategy, an advisory service working with entrepreneurs to build enterprises the world needs. Over the years, he has developed tools, frameworks, and techniques to help entrepreneurs minimize time spent starting up. At Blackbox, he leads program, business, and strategic development.

Chad is a passionate innovator. He has developed 120+ patents with entrepreneurs and inventors across the globe, from London to Chengdu to San Francisco. He grew up internationally in Taipei, Athens, and Jakarta and loves working with born global entrepreneurs.

Marie Paoli

Marie is a passionate believer in the power of entrepreneurs to transform their communities— and the world—for the better. Committed to creating opportunities for the exchange of people and ideas, she brings moxie and creativity to the Blackbox team.

Before heading west to Silicon Valley, Marie served under the Obama Administration at the U.S. Department of State. She focused on supporting youth and women entrepreneurs as a member of the planning team for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, designing digital engagement strategies that resulted in the largest online reach of any U.S. government-sponsored event in history. Marie has worked with young people from more than 120 countries, empowering them to lead the way in developing solutions to some of the most pressing global challenges of our time.

Today, Marie helps entrepreneurs connect to their own greatness through Blackbox. She leads program development and works to cultivate, engage, and maintain a top-notch global community of Blackbox alumni, advisors, speakers, and mentors.

Marie graduated cum laude from George Washington University. She lives in San Francisco with her boyfriend, Dmitri, and cat, Pippi. In her spare time, she enjoys making music, cooking, and seeking out adventure whenever (and wherever) possible.

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