The Instacart Mafia

July 21, 2023
Tech Mafias

Company "mafias" are all the rage, and we here at PIN love to dig deep into the most influential Tech Mafias, especially since we're huge on democratizing access to startup investing by supporting communities with all the legal and bureaucratic work when it comes to setting up a community investment club.

Each week we cover the top Tech Mafias, and this week is no different - say hello to the Instacart Mafia. An elite group of founders and innovators who are behind some of the most successful startups.

If you missed our previous posts, make sure to check the Twitter Mafia, Lyft Mafia, Stripe Mafia, and Netflix Mafia articles. Investing in fellow coworkers' startups, especially as a community or alumni group, is one of the best ways to get in early on deals as well as support the ideas and ventures of people you love and admire. Who knows what's around the corner in your own network and community!

Companies covered: 

  • Ascend
  • Anomalo
  • PopSQL
  • Hyphen
  • Gembah
  • Pipedream
  • Human First
  • Mylk Guys
  • AdQuick
  • Humming Homes
  • Umami Cart
  • Rootly
  • Agora
  • Sematic


Founder: Andrew Wynn
Instacart Role: Senior Manager, Data and Catalog
Capital Raised: $285 million
Investors: Index Ventures
Stage: Series A

Andrew worked at Instacart as Senior Manager of Data and Catalog. After a successful run, he ventured out to start Ascend which makes end-to-end insurance payments easier.


Founder: Jeremy Stanley, Elliot Shmukler
Instacart Role: VP Data Science, Chief Growth Officer
Capital Raised: $39 million
Investors: Foundation Capital
Stage: Series A

Jeremy was the VP of Data Science at InstaCart and Elliot was the Chief Growth Officer, after which they decided to start Anomalo, a complete platform that detects data inefficiencies in your enterprise.


Founder: Quentin Rousseau, Rahil Sondhi
Instacart Role: Senior Reliability Engineer, Tech Lead
Capital Raised: $17.4 million
Investors: Y Combinator
Stage: Series A

Quentin and Rahil started PopSQL, a collaborative SQL editor to share queries and visualize data. Quentin was the Senior Reliability Engineer and Rahil was the Tech Lead at InstaCart.


Founder: Stephen Klein
Instacart Role: Operations + User Research
Capital Raised: $58 million
Investors: Compound, Tiger Global Management
Stage: Series A

Stephen, after an amazing stint doing Operations and User research at InstaCart, decided to start Hyphen, a platform to run your cloud-kitchen on autopilot.


Founder: Zack Leonard
Instacart Role: Team Lead, Forecasting / Scheduling / Scaling
Capital Raised:  $14.3 million
Investors: ATX
Stage: Series A

After leading the forecasting team at Instacart, Zack geared up to start Gembah, a marketplace for Product Development, for anyone who wants to build a better product.


Founder: Dylan Sather
Instacart Role: Senior Software Engineer
Capital Raised: $20 million
Investors: CRV
Stage: Series A

Dylan was a Senior Software Engineer at Instacart before he decided to make a platform for developers that helps them integrate APIs better and faster. Soon Pipedream was born.

Elektra Labs/Human First

Founder: Andrea Coravos
Instacart Role:
Software Engineer
Capital Raised: $14.9 million
Investors: Lux Capital
Stage: Series A

Andrea was a Software Engineer at Instacart before she started Human First. Human First is redefining the way clinical trials are conducted and saving countless lives in the process.

Rising Stars


Founder: Emmanuel Turlay
Instacart Role: Machine Learning Engineer
Capital Raised: $3.2 million
Investors: Y Combinator
Stage: Seed

Sematic is an open-source orchestration platform for machine learning. The founder previously worked at Instacart and Cruise.

Mylk Guys

Founder: Gaurav Maken
Instacart Role: Senior Product Manager - Catalog
Capital Raised: $2.5 million
Investors: Y Combinator, Pear Ventures
Stage: Seed

As a Senior Product Manager of Catalog at InstaCart, Gaurav took upon the responsibility to make a vegan e-commerce platform, and soon enough Mylk Guys was born.


Founder: Fahim Ferdous, Vic Ramon
Instacart Role: Senior Engineer, Technical Team Lead
Capital Raised: $9.2 million
Investors: Initialized Capital
Stage: Series A

Great things can happen when the Senior Engineer and Technical Team Lead from InstaCart join forces. AdQuick is one of those great things. AdQuick lets you plan, book, and measure out-of-home ads, quickly.

Humming Homes

Founder: Kyle Carnes
Instacart Role: General Manager
Capital Raised: $10.4 million
Investors: AlleyCorp, Greycroft
Stage: Seed

Maintaining a home takes a lot of time, energy and effort. Kyle, the former-General Manager of Northeast at Instacart, started Humming Homes with a simple mission of making home management easier.

Umami Cart

Founder: Will Nicholis
Instacart Role: GM
Capital Raised: $6 million
Investors: FJ Labs
Stage: Seed

William was General Manager at Instacart before starting Umami Cart, an e-commerce platform delivering Asian groceries.


Founder: Quentin Rousseau
Instacart Role: Senior Reliability Engineer
Capital Raised: $3.2 million
Investors: Y Combinator
Stage: Seed

It’s rare when a person features on this list twice. Quentin, a Senior Reliability Engineer at InstaCart, founded PopSQL, then started Rootly, which makes it easier to manage incidents on Slack.


Founder: Geoffrey Tisserand
Instacart Role: Senior Software Engineer
Capital Raised: $7.5 million
Investors: CRV
Stage: Seed

Geoffrey started Agora to make compensation easier. Geoffrey was previously a Senior Software Engineer at InstaCart.

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