When Jan Koum was growing up, he wasn’t well off. His family was Ukranian and moved to Silicon Valley when he was a teenager, according to Forbes’ Parmy Olson. They lived in a tiny, government subsidized apartment; Koum’s mother babysat to bring in extra money while Koum worked at a local grocery store.
Additionally, the family lived on food stamps.
So, when it came time to sign a $19 billion acquisition deal, Koum knew where he wanted it to happen.
Koum, cofounder Brian Acton and venture capitalist Jim Goetz of Sequoia drove a few blocks from WhatsApp’s discreet headquarters in Mountain View to a disused white building across the railroad tracks, the former North County Social Services office where Koum, 37, once stood in line to collect food stamps. That’s where the three of them inked the agreement to sell their messaging phenom…
Here’s a picture of Koum signing the document: