Happy birthday Fabrice Grinda: the extraordinary tech entrepreneur


Venturing into the unknown with a known strategy has always been an entrepreneur’s unique selling point. Fabrice Grinda. Developing an investment strategy is not an easy task, but it does require commendable effort and hard work. Although he has been described as Midlife Crisis Tech Entrepreneur, he paved the way in his style to spawn a few profitable businesses. Fabrice Grinda, co-founder and former CEO of Aucland, Zingy and OLX, has made more than 250 exits out of 700 angel investments.

Date of Birth: Aug 3, 1974

Net value : $ 100 million (as of 2015)

On the occasion of the 47e Fabrice Grinda’s birthday, let’s recall some interesting, lesser-known facts that give the opportunity to get to know him more closely.

1. Unlike other entrepreneurs, he stands out by taking the road less traveled. He follows his 9 business selection criteria before investing in just one. He is a startup favorite because he is always keen to identify a viable business that can hold the investment and, in turn, the progress yields several numbers. He doesn’t like to do things half-finished, on the contrary, he expects everything, even the smallest ones like his email chats, to be finished. He also spends a lot of his time discussing his shortcomings.

2. He was born in France and graduated from Princeton University, USA in 1996. Shortly after graduation he joined McKinsey as a consultant and worked with them for two years. Fabrice Grinda began his entrepreneurial journey in 1998, when he co-founded and held the position of CEO of Aucland. The company quickly established itself as one of the most popular auction sites in Europe. In 1999, he raised $ 18 million for Aucland in exchange for 51% of the company. Later in 2000 the rest of the company was sold.

3. A guy he met when selling his ringtones for $ 2 each, urged him to get into the ringtone business, so came “Zingy”, after Aucland. As the guy who sold each ringtone for $ 2 six months later, he was noticed to make $ 2 million in monthly income. In 2001 he moved to the United States and started with Zingy, bringing an idea of ​​the European and Asian market to the American market. In 2004, he sold Zingy for $ 80 million. The blogger also states that the most important innovation that has a big impact on today’s society is the cell phone and these are the main drivers of productivity. While considering his personal life, he says, the internet has played a crucial role and most of his life’s events have centered on it.

4. Fabrice Grinda co-founded OLX in 2006 with Alec Oxenford, with the goal of becoming the world’s largest free classifieds site, similar to Craigslist. During his first visit to Argentina in January 2006, he spent a few weeks with Alec to get to know him better. The two had spent a lot of time rock climbing, hiking and biking together. Fabrice found Alec to be his ideal business partner, and both agreed to be the co-founders and co-CEOs of OLX.

5. In addition to being an entrepreneur, visionary, analyst and blogger, Fabrice Grinda is an angel investor in approximately 647 companies around the world. Surprisingly, one of them is the Alibaba Group. In India, he invested in about fifteen startups, Chingari is one of them. In 2021, he invested in 29 startups.

6. In 2015, Fabrice Grinda was on the cover of the Styles section of the New York Times as a Midlife Crisis Tech Entrepreneur, leaving with a suitcase containing 50 items and a backpack. It highlighted his simplicity in his way of living with limited resources and portrayed him 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 had increased his spending tenfold and donated 75% of his non-financial material assets to charity.

7. In 2018, Fabrice was also classified # 1 Angel Investor in the World by Forbes, with 245 investments.

With a lot of investment and exits, the futurist now on the verge of giving up, he says “When I looked back at the things that mattered most to me,” he said, “it was were experiences, friendships and family – none of that I had invested a lot, partly because I was too busy and partly because I felt grounded in my possessions. And these words portray his actions of charity and endorsing family members with essential comforts.

The post is part of a Anniversary series where we very frequently celebrate the birthdays of renowned personalities from the Tech Industry. The series features entrepreneurs, senior executives, innovators or renewed leaders who have moved the industry forward with their exponential skills and vision. The intention is to highlight the person’s accomplishments and touch on the little known, but interesting, part of their life. You can see the list of all famous tech personalities including Mark Zuckerberg, Marissa Mayer, Sean Parker, Andy Rubin, Julian Assange, by following this link or by subscribing to your daily newsletter.

To make it more exciting, we suggest you take advantage of the comments section if you are one of those celebrating their birthday with today’s personality.

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