David Hariri’s Journey: Co-Founding Ada, Pivoting to a Unicorn, and the Essentials of Achieving Product-Market Fit

Ada’s Co-founder David Hariri: The Story Behind the Unicorn Status

Ada is an AI-powered customer support platform that has achieved unicorn status with a 1.2B valuation in May 2021, becoming one of the rare Canadian tech startups to achieve such a feat. In this article, we highlight an interview with David Hariri, the co-founder of Ada, where he shares his story and struggles that ultimately led to the success of his company.

From Teehan and Lax to Facebook

David started his career as a developer and designer at Teehan and Lax, which was later acquired by Facebook. David’s experience at Teehan and Lax helped him to develop skills that would come in handy in his entrepreneurship journey. The experience at Facebook and working on its various products, such as Messenger, also influenced David’s entrepreneurial journey forward.

The Rise of Volley

David’s entrepreneurial journey started with Volley, a messaging app that he co-founded in 2016. The idea was to build an app that would help users to communicate with their friends and family more effectively than traditional messaging apps.

However, despite initial traction, Volley started experiencing challenges with user retention and growth. They almost gave up, but David and his team decided to take a leap of faith and pivot the app towards a different direction.

The Pivotal Moment

In the last nine months of Volley’s runway, the team decided to pivot the app towards building an AI-powered customer support platform, which ultimately became Ada.

Ada has enabled large companies like Zoom to provide excellent customer support experiences at scale. Ada’s platform leverages AI to provide fast and personalized support to customers, reducing the workload for customer service representatives.

The Success Of Ada

Ada’s success is an excellent example of the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. While Volley faced initial challenges, David and his team’s persistence and decision to pivot to Ada paid dividends, ultimately leading to Ada’s unicorn status.


David’s entrepreneurial journey is an excellent example of the grit and determination required to build a successful startup. Ada’s story is also a reminder of the importance of persistence and the willingness to take risks and pivot when necessary. By leveraging AI to provide fast and personalized customer support experiences, Ada has cemented its place as one of Canada’s top tech startups.

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