Tony Fadell, $3.2 Billion Deal

Tony Fadell is a Lebanese / American engineer and inventor, Born in Detroit, he moved with his family throughout the country, attended many schools and moved to Silicon Valley when he was twenty years old, where he founded six companies, three of which he sold with sizeable profits, and three were closed down, after which he was recruited by Philips Electronics to help build one of their PDA devices.

In 2001 he was recruited by Apple as a contractor to help create a new MP3 player, 6 months later, the first iPod was born, and was a huge success. However, couple of months later Tony became a full time employee at the iPod division. He resigned in 2008 from his position as “Vice President” of the iPod division.

After leaving his job at Apple in 2008, he became a personal advisor for Steve Jobs; in 2010 he founded his latest company “Nest Lab” where he invented the “Nest Thermostat” (a smart thermostat that can learn your habits, make your life easier and control your energy consumption), which was promoted and sold at all Apple Stores.

In January 2014, Tony Fadell sold out Nest Lab to Google for $3.2 billion after releasing the second generation of the of Nest Thermostat, keeping his position as chief executive officer at the company.

In all his interviews, Tony states that Steve Jobs was his mentor and all his product designs are influenced by what he learned at Apple, he also stated that the Nest Thermostat is inspired by Apple design (simplicity and smart functionality). Which explains why Google was so desperate to buy it at $3.2 billion.

Knowing that Google is one of Apple’s biggest competitors, famous for buying the “Android” operating system in 2008 which started as a copy of the iOS “Apple’s mobile operating system” after releasing the first iPhone in 2007, and fueling a revolution of “iPhone wannabe” Smartphones. When Google bought Nest Labs, they didn’t buy only a smart thermostat company, they also bought with it a window to Apple’s engineering and design techniques, they bought with it a manual of how Apple works and designs its products which explains why the executives at Apple are not happy with Tony’s decision to sell, and why they might withdraw the Nest Thermostat from all Apple Stores.

People like Tony are an inspiration to young Lebanese entrepreneurs around the world who with hard work and innovation can fulfill their dreams.

The Thermostat

Interview

Marwan Rashid
LFBC Correspondent
 
 

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