Abdel Tefridj - Master Soap Maker Turned Chief Innovation Officer #90

Abdel is leading the product development at Data Bid Machine to optimize companies’ traffic acquisition. He is a technology and product executive with an extensive background in eCommerce, data science, and software development. Abel has also held roles as chief innovation officer.

He is advising several growing companies in their digital transformation and scaling their data science initiatives. Strong background in the Search, NLP, deep learning, Information Retrieval, Recommendation Systems, and Data Analytics spaces.

Led a +1000-person global product and engineering teams that build, innovate, and maintain B2B and B2C global platforms across several industries: Energy, Chemical, technology, finance, and retail. Experienced general manager with strong results in managing and growing digital and product revenue volumes ranging from $100 million to $5 Billion+.

Abdel speaks regularly at conferences, is fluent in four languages, loves to travel and meet new people. To connect the dots you need to collect the dots.

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A note from Grant

Combining a double degree in computer science and applied statistics with an eye for business, Abdel Tefridj has built his career by being at the intersection of data science and product management. Over the years, he’s worked internationally in France, West Africa and the US, holding down titles like Lead Consultant, Head of Analytics, Chief Product Officer, Chief Innovation Officer and Chief Technology Officer.

Along his journey, he’s worked for the likes of The Home Depot, Career Builder, Dumpsters.com.  These days, Abdel has taken the leap to build his own startup, Data Bid Machine, which uses deep learning to power ad campaigns.  Be sure to stick around as we catch up with Abdel Tefridj and hear how this once upon a time master soap maker became a data scientist and tech startup co-founder!

-Grant Ingersoll


“Leaders provide 2 things for their team: clarity and hope. I think if you can do those two effectively, people will follow you.”

“The MBA will give you validation that you understand the business. Plus it will give you a bigger network. For me, the biggest value was the big network.”

“I think the fastest way to learn is not by reading but by talking to people.”

“The biggest things I’ve learned over the years in product management is follow the money and prioritization.”

“Ask 5-10 customers what they’re willing to spend on. Just go check with the end user and buyer.”

“When I promote a new engineer leader they tend get fixated on people’s weakness. They try to just address weakness. I say ’no, no, no we all have weakness, how to we leverage everybody’s strengths?’”

—Abdel Tefridj

Key Milestones

  1. How did Abdel learn how to make soap through apprenticeship? What does apprenticeship look like in other countries? Why is it so prevalent?
  2. Abdel has a computer science degree but has mostly chosen roles focused on product and data science analytics. What has guided his career?
  3. What is a chief innovation officer?
  4. Why did Abdel decide to get an MBA?
  5. How does Abdel approach networking?
  6. What is Abdel’s approach to product management?
  7. Why does Abdel insist on bringing his software engineers to meetings with customers?
  8. Keys for successful team building
  9. What is Data Bid Machine? Abdel shares the founding story

Additional Resources

Learn more about Southern Data Science Conference - https://www.southerndatascience.com/

More about Trey Grainger - https://www.treygrainger.com/about/

Connect with Abdel Tefridj

Connect with Grant Ingersoll