Mike Quinn was co-founder and CEO of one Africa's earliest major financial technology (FinTech) companies, Zoona. He raised over 35 million dollars of international investment for this Zambian startup - before its heartbreaking crash and Mike's exit from the company.
In the conversation today, Mike shares how this Canadian engineer first came to Africa as a volunteer with Engineers Without Borders. Through early connections and personal initiative, he then found himself leading a Zambian mobile money company. In just a few years, Mike grew Zoona to a company that served millions of unbanked consumers in Zambia and Malawi. But that all changed when their Series C round of financing fell through at the last minute.
This is a classic David vs. Goliath story. Mike and his co-founders were a group of young, ambitious techies who wanted to make life easier for millions of Zambians. To do this, this small company needed to go head-to-head with billion-dollar international phone companies.
The craziest part? They almost won.
All of this and more is covered in Mike's book, Failing to Win, available worldwide through Amazon.