Venturing into unknown with known strategy is always been the unique selling point of the entrepreneur Fabrice Grinda. Developing an investment strategy is not an easy task nonetheless it demands commendable efforts and relentless hard work. Though he has been labelled as a Midlife Crisis Tech Entrepreneur, he has led the way in his style to give birth to a few profitable ventures. Fabrice Grinda, the co-founder and former CEOs of Aucland, Zingy, and OLX, made over 250 exits on 700 angel investments.
Date of Birth: 3 August 1974
Net Worth: $100 million (As per 2015)
On the occasion of the 47th birth anniversary of Fabrice Grinda, let us refresh few less known interesting facts that render an opportunity to get to know him closer.
1. Unlike other entrepreneurs, he stands out by taking the path less travelled. He follows his 9 business selection criteria before investing into one. He is a startup’s favourite as he is always eager to identify one viable firm that can hold the investment and, in turn, progress returns multiple digits. He doesn’t like doing things half-finished, instead, he expects everything, even the small ones like his email discussions, to be finished. He firmly dedicates a significant amount of his time to discuss about his shortcomings as well.
2. He was born in France and graduated from Princeton University, USA in 1996. Soon after his graduation, he joined McKinsey as a consultant and work with them for two years. Fabrice Grinda started his entrepreneurial journey in 1998, when he co-founded and served as CEO of Aucland. The company soon established itself as one of Europe’s most popular auction sites. In 1999, he raised $18 million for Aucland in exchange of 51% of the company. Later in 2000, the rest of the company was sold.
3. A guy whom he met him during selling his ringtones for $2 each, provoked him to take up the ringtone business hence, came up “Zingy,” after Aucland. As the guy who sold each ringtone for $2 six months later he was noticed to come up with $2 million monthly revenue. In 2001, he moved to US and started off with Zingy, bringing an idea from the European and Asian market into the US market. In 2004, he sold Zingy to fetch $80 million. The blogger also states that the most important innovation that has large impact on the society today is the cell phones and these are the primary drivers of the productivity. While considering his personal life he says, the internet has played a crucial role and most of his life events have been centered on it.
4. Fabrice Grinda co-founded OLX in 2006 with Alec Oxenford, with the goal of becoming the world’s largest free classified site, similar to Craigslist. While visiting Argentina for the first time in January 2006, he spent a few weeks with Alec to get to know him better. Both had spent a good amount of time climbing, hiking, and biking together. Fabrice found Alec to be his ideal business partner, and both of them agreed to be the co-founders and co-CEOs of OLX.
5. Apart from being an entrepreneur, visionary, analyst, and blogger, Fabrice Grinda is an angel investor in about 647 companies across the world. Surprisingly, one of them is Alibaba Group. In India, he invested in about 15 startups, Chingari is one of them. In 2021, he invested in 29 startups.
6. In 2015, Fabrice Grinda was featured on the cover of New York Times Styles Section as Midlife Crisis Tech Entrepreneur walking away with a suitcase carrying 50 items and a backpack. This was highlighting his simplicity in the way of living with limited resources and depicting him to be on the verge of crisis and his transition from a luxurious lifestyle to a simple one. In response to the NY Times article, he wrote on his blog that he has reduced his spending by tenfold and donated 75 percent of his non-financial material possessions to charity.
7. In 2018, Fabrice was also ranked the #1 Angel Investor in the world by Forbes, with 245 investments.
With a lot of investments and exits, the futurist now on the verge of giving up he tells “When I looked back at the things that mattered the most to me,” he said, “they were experiences, friendships and family — none of which I had invested much in, partly because I was too busy, and partly because I felt anchored by my possessions.” And these words depict his actions of charity and endorsing his family members with essential comforts.
The post is a part of a B’day Series where we celebrate the birthday of renowned personalities from Tech Industry, very frequently. The series includes Entrepreneurs, C-level Executives, innovators or a renewed leaders who moved the industry with his exponential skill set and vision. The intent is to highlight the person’s achievements and touch base the little known, but interesting, part of his life. You can see the list of all earlier celebrated tech personalities, including Mark Zuckerberg, Marissa Mayer, Sean Parker, Andy Rubin, Julian Assange, by following this link or subscribe to your daily newsletter.
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