This week’s featured founder is Nick Alexander, co-founder of Yoshi. Yoshi is disrupting an industry that I am sure NONE of you ever thought about disrupting: gas stations and auto maintenance. Did you ever say to yourself, “You know, gas distribution really needs to be revamped?” Well, Nick and his co-founders did and are making significant waves in 20 major markets.
Nick is an alum of Y Combinator, not just one time but THREE times. So prepare to learn from an incredible founder who is doing big things. Y Combinator is an accelerator that provides guidance to early-stage companies to help them get to a point where they have built something impressive enough to raise money on a large scale. It is not easy to get into as the competition is very high. Companies like Airbnb, Dropbox, Stripe, Instacart, DoorDash, and many, many more have gone through Y Combinator. All that to say…Nick’s three tours through YC is so incredibly impressive.
Have I hyped his story enough? Are you as excited to unpack his entrepreneurial journey as I am? Awesome! I mean, with a resume like his, entrepreneurship must have been on his radar from the very beginning, right? Well, let’s find out. This is Nick Alexander’s startup story.
In this episode, you’ll hear:
- Nick’s early childhood, wanting to be a doctor and how entrepreneurship never had crossed his mind at a young age
- His first taste of entrepreneurship right before college when he began working at a newspaper
- How and why he made the switch from premed to computer engineering his second year at Duke University
- His very first startup while in college, going viral on campus, followed by his next several startups, including a music service called BlueTunes and exiting
- About getting a call from a friend that was accepted into Y Combinator, asked to join him to build a product, accepting, and flying out
- His first time through Y Combinator, equating it as an extension of college, developing an idea that became TinyCoupon, the largest coupon index in the world
- His philosophy when creating his first startups, building something cool that people might want and how that changed (or didn’t) over time
- The creation of Yoshi, a subscription service that makes it so you never have to worry about stopping for gas or routine maintenance
- Testing the Yoshi business model outside the Silicon Valley bubble and how that led to Nashville being one of their most successful markets
- Learning to appreciate the journey
“The story is ALWAYS much more glamorous on the outside than it is on the inside. This is the case for even the most successful startups.” – Nick Alexander, Yoshi
Resources from this episode:
Nick Alexander on LinkedIn:https://www.linkedin.com/in/ndalexander/
The Startup Story on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thestartupstory/
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