Gil Elbaz

Chief Executive, Factual

Gil Elbaz is the founder and chief executive of Factual, a data company that enables developers, publishers, and advertisers to build highly relevant mobile experiences using the context of location. Prior to Factual, he co-founded Applied Semantics Inc., which developed AdSense. Google acquired ASI in 2003, and Elbaz stayed on to run Google Los Angeles.

Enjoy most: I really enjoy aspects of the company building where we are developing technology or business models that change the rules of the game.

Toughest challenge: My biggest challenge when starting Factual was convincing anyone that data was a valuable enough asset to start a company dedicated entirely to buying, selling and perfecting it.

Proudest moment: When yet another major app agreed to license Factual data. I can tell you that many of us at Factual are so proud that the world’s most impactful companies are licensing our data.

Best advice: Pick a goal, point towards it, and give yourself a full 10 years to succeed because it may take that long.

Most excited: Factual’s plans for the future, which include expanding both horizontally (increasing the breadth of our data assets) and vertically (making our data more accessible for specific verticals).

Beverage: A good friend taught me the wonders of drinking lots of water. But, when he’s not looking I’m downing coffee.

Car you drive: Tesla. Only because it is a great environmental choice, of course, not because it is powerful, smooth, comfortable, and is internet-connected with an amazing 17” display.

Alma Mater: BS, Caltech.

Fun fact: I joined the cross country team at Caltech even though I had never run a full mile.

Bucket list: Hike the Pacific Crest Trail (or a good chunk of it).

Hobby/passion: Besides data, it is basketball. I am an NBA fan, a Clippers season-ticket holder, and play full court games every single week.