So excited to share my conversation with my friend Mike Vaughan, Former Chief Operating Officer of Venmo. Mike was born and raised right outside of Philly where he went to the Hill School and then graduated from Penn in 1997. He currently lives right outside Philly with his wife and two sons.

Mike takes us on the journey of how Venmo was founded by two Penn graduates! He joined the team in the early days of 2011 when their headquarters were still in a small apartment in Philly and there were only a few people on the team. Since day one, Mike was the Chief Operating Officer of Venmo, where he played a major role in helping build the company from the ground up.

Today Venmo is consistently in the list of the Top 20 Apps in the world, but what’s important to remember is that just like every start-up, Venmo experienced a great amount of adversity in those beginning days. In fact, they almost shut down in 2012 when they were days away from not being able to meet payroll. Thankfully, a company called Braintree came along, saw the potential in Venmo, and bought them for $26.2M in 2012. Then PayPal acquired them for $800M in 2013. Mike left Venmo in 2019 and is now an Executive in Residence for Oak HC/FT, a venture growth equity fund investing in financial technology and healthcare information and services. Hope you guys enjoy Mike’s story as much as I did!

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