In October 2020, Stripe (an American financial service and software as a service company headquartered in San Francisco) acquired Paystack for a rumoured amount of about $200M.
Paystack is a technology company solving payments problems for ambitious businesses. Their mission is to help businesses in Africa become profitable, envied, and loved.
In this episode of #FoundersConnect, I sit down with the CTO of Paystack, Ezra Olubi to discuss his background, his work before Paystack, the experiences acquired through the years and more. He shares how Paystack started, why he said Yes to the idea, how Paystack raised money and eventually got acquired; his biggest life lessons and favourite failures and even talks about his personal style. It’s one for the books.
0:23 - How would you describe Ezra?
1:16 - How was growing up for you? What experiences shaped you?
3:53 - From childhood till now, what has changed about your views on Religion?
4:50 - What was it about the Paystack idea that gave him the confidence to build it, and with Shola?
9:54 - The ways in which Ezra and Shola complement each other.
11:48 - How do you manage all the people and teams in Paystack?
13:02 - Biggest lesson and favourite failure as a CTO?
15:15 - What mistakes did you make?
17:37 - How hard was it raising money in 2016 vs now?
22:19 - If you were going to do it all over again, what is one thing you will do differently?
23:28 - What friendships have had the most impact on you?
24:39 - How would you describe your style?
25:47 - Have you had any struggles with how people perceive you, and your style?
27:50 - Do you have a lot of male friends?
28:32 - Were you always androgynous?
28:56 - Do you think your style would evolve?
30:04 - Fun questions, bucket list, social media, cereal, favourite city, etc.
32:14 - What should one look for in a technical cofounder if they want to start a company?