Revolution of Necessity | Geekie CEO Claudio Sassaki Transcript
EPISODE ONE

REVOLUTIONIZING EDUCATION

IN BRAZIL - TRANSCRIPT

"The only way to cause a systemic change was to use technology to personalize learning"

—Claudio Sassaki

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Claudio Sassaki: Everybody talked about legacy but none of them were happy with what they’ve built. I didn’t want that for me. So I quit.

 

David Madden: Silicon Valley likes to say that it’s making the world a better place, but that’s mostly bullshit.

 

The problems that most famous tech companies are solving aren’t real …. “problems”. But in other countries - developing countries - there are entrepreneurs who are building things that are actually changing people’s lives in very practical ways.

 

That’s what this podcast is about.

 

I’m David Madden and you’re listening to the “Revolution of Necessity”.

 

On this podcast we share the stories of tech entrepreneurs in developing countries. these are people who are innovating in places where technology could genuinely make the world a better place.

This podcast is supported by Omidyar Network. Omidyar Network is a philanthropic investment firm set up by the guy who created eBay, Pierre Omidyar, and his wife Pam.

Today: how could technology be used to improve education. We all know how important education is but the standard model seems pretty outdated. Put a room full of kids together kind of the same age, teach them the same thing mostly at the same time… and the outcomes are not always great...

 

Claudio Sassaki: Different people learn in different ways but the school treats everybody the same way.

 

David Madden: That’s Claudio Sassaki - the co-founder and CEO of Geekie, a Brazilian company using tech to tackle one of the country’s biggest challenges: education.

 

Claudio Sassaki: So Brazil is a very violent country, and one of the reasons is because these people, they don't have the opportunity to, to choose a career, they just do whatever is left.

 

David Madden: In Brazil about half of all high school students drop out before graduating. Sassaki set out to fix this problem.

 

Claudio Sassaki: The only way to cause a systemic change was to use technology to personalize learning.

 

David Madden: That’s exactly what he did. Sassaki - along with Geekie co-founder Eduardo Bontempo - developed a range of web and mobile applications that adapt to the learning needs of individual students.

 

Geekie’s major product, “Geekie Lab”, integrates with the school curriculum and provides teachers with digital lessons that identify students’ gaps in learning in real time. Geekie lab then recommends interventions and extra activities for each student.

 

Today Geekie is in over 5000 Brazilian schools and has served over 12 million students.

 

Sassaki, welcome to the revolution of necessity.

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well thank you, it's my pleasure to be here. It's an honor, actually.

 

David Madden: So sassaki growing up in brazil, you knew that education was really important. Your mother was a teacher, but perhaps more significantly, education had played this critical role in helping lift your family out of poverty. Can you help us understand this?

 

Claudio Sassaki: I was born and raised in Brazil but my grandparents came from Japan a long time ago. So my grandparents came to work in both coffee and pepper plantations and it's fair to say that in, in their minds education was the only way to, you know, evolve from that situation, so I mean, just to give you one example, my father is the youngest of 15 kids and just the, the youngest ones were able to go to college, right? because the oldest had to work in the farm. So I grew up, you know, knowing that it was very important for me to be a good student, to be able go to a good university and that would have a good impact on my life.

 

David Madden: Not only was education important for Sassaki, it was easy. He breezed through high school scoring first on the country’s high school exam.

 

Claudio Sassaki: I had no idea about the  impact of, you know, ranking first in the national examination would have in my life.

 

David Madden: Almost over night, Sassaki found he was not just a national whiz kid but a sought after tutor. He put himself through university by offering private sessions.

 

Claudio Sassaki: A lot of the kids that came to me, and they were considered as, you know, kind of the trouble students right, the guys who were not able to learn.

 

David Madden: Though school had been easy for Sassaki, he quickly realized why others struggled.

 

Claudio Sassaki: They were very very smart, I mean certainly very capable of learning. It was just that they didn’t connect with either the teacher or the school itself.

 

David Madden: So, you have some interesting experiences with education and you're interested in it. You win a scholarship to do a masters in education at Stanford, but you're also interested in business, so you combine it with a MBA. And at the end of it, you go to Wall Street. Why? Why do you go to Wall Street?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well, you know, looking back, my dream when I went to Stanford, huh, my plan was to try to work for either United Nations or the World Bank, any of those multilateral organizations, that was my - if you read my essay - that’s what was in there. But then banks came, and I booked interviews to practice essentially. I met this guy, connected with him and I just thought that I could just learn a lot from him, and...

 

David Madden: And so, maybe in a classic case of path dependency, you end up, you end up spending almost 10 years…

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah.

 

David Madden: ...In the finance industry. Now one really important thing that happens is that you meet another Brazilian, in 2007, a young guy, a bit younger than you, called Eduardo Bondembo.

Claudio Sassaki: I returned to Brazil in 2007. My father got sick, and within a month, I was back here, living in New York I was back here in Sao Paulo. And I came directly to Credit Suisse, and in my first assignment, first week I was here, it was this huge huh, last minute, very demanding, a lot of pressure project that we needed to work on. And then people said, you know “this is the guy you’re gonna work with” and it was Eduardo. And, you know, those stories about not showering, and not going back home for 3-4 days are actually true. So that’s how I got to know him and it’s interesting you know, not sleeping too much, not eating very well, a lot of pressure, a lot of work, huh, you know, drives you to your edge. And that’s I think when you really get to know, huh, the people that you’re working with. And we, we immediately connected I guess because we both came from humble families, you know, his father was the first one in his family to go to college so he also came from not the kind of the wealthy families that you usually see in investment banking in Brazil that have all the family connections.

 

David Madden: And you guys have a, had a shared interest in education, right?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah, he was a tutor, huh, in college.

 

David Madden: Like you?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Like me. And we also worked on a few education deals together. We started to joke that, you know, one day we could do something together in education.

 

David Madden: When did it start to get more serious? Because you meet Eduardo in 2007, when, when do you start really seriously “hey, here's an idea” or...

 

Claudio Sassaki: It started to get more serious around 2009. He decided to leave Credit Suisse to go to MIT for his MBA, and then his summer job, we essentially were working together and the outcome of that sort of a summer job was the idea that became Geekie.

 

David Madden: So tell us what the idea was that you were working on over the summer, so like?

 

Claudio Sassaki: So we were researching how we could use technology to offer a low cost high quality solution to K-12 students in Brazil.

 

David Madden: And why did you focus on that?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well Brazil is, is a country where roughly half of the students who start high school, they don't finish. Out of those who finish about 10% learn the basics in Portuguese and math; it creates this huge inequality that results in ultimately in violence. So Brazil is a very violent country and one of the reasons is because these people, they don't have the opportunity to choose a career, they just do whatever is left. And so the only way to cause a systemic change was to use technology to personalize learning, in large scale, because based on my experience, based on his experience, we truly believe that, you know, if you are able to treat each person's individual gaps and learning styles, of course, you are going to have better results. We were looking at technology that could support that vision and we couldn't find any. So we were like, if we try to do this part time it's just not going to work. So the, yeah, the final outcome, I quit my job, he quit MIT and we started Geekie.

 

David Madden: Hang on, that’s, so that’s this big step, right?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah, it’s a big step

 

David Madden: He's walking away from an MBA at MIT, you've got a pretty high level job.

 

Claudio Sassaki: That's right.

 

David Madden: I mean, what made you take that leap?

 

Claudio Sassaki: I… I was miserable with the life I had. I was not using my time and my talents for something that I truly believed and I was doing that for people that I respected as business people but I did not respect, you know, from a personal perspective. We used to go out with clients all the time, you know, to talk and drink, and I'll tell you, how they describe their lives, I mean, was not a happy scene. And it’s this pressure to look successful to others versus, you know, how you live your life and what you leave as a legacy and everyone talked about legacy but none of them were happy with what they’ve built. I didn't want that for me, and I was not only not doing what I could do, but I was, I was also supporting these people to get richer…

 

David Madden: Right.

 

Claudio Sassaki:... as opposed to do what's most important.

 

David Madden: So you quit.

 

Claudio Sassaki: So I quit.

 

David Madden: So in 2011 Sassaki and Bontempo abandon everything and throw themselves into their startup. Neither of them are educators or techies, but they use their vision to inspire some talent to join them and they get to work.

 

David Madden: So you had this big vision, which is that you want to change education in Brazil, and you have this idea that maybe you can use machine learning to have a more personalized education. But that's still pretty, pretty vague. How did you get to a product?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well the first product was… well we still have it! I mean it’s funny, it, it was much more like a game, a real game. So as you get questions right you start building your, your buildings. So the ultimate goal was to build your city, as you, you know, buildings start to deteriorate, you had to go back and do more exercises. That was the first version of what we were trying to build, but it was, it was a disaster, in the first trials that we did with users, I mean, it was awful they didn't like the experience. And so we switched.

 

David Madden: At that stage was it centered on this national exam that everyone did? Had you seen already on that yet or not?

 

Claudio Sassaki: No, not at all.

 

David Madden: Okay.

 

Claudio Sassaki: So we started to investigate about the national assessment and what we, what we realized was that the way the score is calculated, it's sort of a black box, no one knew how to calculate. And so, after digging a little bit deeper, we thought we found an opportunity to create a prediction system so that when the student would take one of our exams we could predict the grade or the score the student would get in the national examination, so...

 

David Madden: And then how did you take that to market?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well the strategy… of course we had no money, we had no brand, we had no experience. So our strategy was if we can build something that is useful for top tier schools here, like very well known schools, that would help us build the credibility that we don't have.

 

David Madden: Tell us about your first clients. Tell us about getting that first client.

 

Claudio Sassaki: It was a school that I went to, actually.

 

David Madden: Okay so it was your...your alma mater.

 

Claudio Sassaki: So I talked to the school owner, huh, he remembered me. He said “I don't know what you guys are building, but I want to be close to you” so that trust was I think what helped us get our first client. Even though the product was far from being good.

 

David Madden: How was the product like, honestly?

 

Claudio Sassaki: I mean honestly, it was, it was awful. We were learning. I guess the biggest frustration for every entrepreneur is you have a vision, but when you start, it's just so far away from the vision.

 

David Madden: And how did you figure out how to make it useful for schools? What was your strategy for doing that?

 

Claudio Sassaki: It's pretty common today, you hear about, you know, A/B testing, talk to your users, etc. At that time it was not as common here in Brazil. But I think our DNA at Geekie is, we don't think we have all the answers. We were very good listeners.

 

David Madden: So you spent a lot of time in the classroom and outside the classroom.

 

Claudio Sassaki: Oh yeah, I mean, again it's, it’s a lot of time at the schools, listening, learning, huh, receiving criticisms, which is not easy. It's much more comfortable to stay, you know, in your office, trying to think about new ideas. It was very hard, but I think the…, it was, it was more instinct than, than experience at the time for sure but we knew that we needed to do something that was useful for teachers.

 

David Madden: Yeah. So by the end of... you start in 2011…

 

Claudio Sassaki: That’s right.

 

David Madden: ...and by the end of 2011 you’ve got the school that you went to and you've got a few more, you've got about seven schools, right?

 

Claudio Sassaki: It was end of 2012, we had about seven private schools that were paying for our solution.

 

David Madden: Okay. And how long had you been going at that point? First, first bit of revenue takes how long?

 

Claudio Sassaki: It was close to a year. A little less than a year from, you know, the beginning until we had something that people would pay for. And there were a few times where we literally ran out of money and then we got our first client that was willing to pay.

 

David Madden: Geekie now has an early version of its “Geekie Test” product: a tool that helps high schools  prepare their students for the super important nationwide exams.

 

Some schools are paying to use this product but the company desperately needs some funding to keep going.

 

But to get money they need to show that this could be bigger than just a few schools.

 

So they come up with... a growth hack.  

 

Claudio Sassaki: We needed to show that our solution could work in large scale so we partnered with this very famous newspaper here in Sao Paulo to offer for free a, a, a mock exam similar to the national exam, which would give the score in the same scale as the national exam.

 

David Madden: How did you get this… how did you get this partnership?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well they were interested in reaching, um, teenagers and people at this age and so I think it was good for them, it was great for us because through their advertisements we were able to really kind of start to become a national brand in Brazil, I mean for free. And not only that, we were able to get data from, huh, thousands of students who helped us improve our algorithms as well. So it was like a win-win-win for all of us, as long as we could deliver, right?  And it was, I mean, that week I'll tell you was one of the worst weeks in my life because we barely slept, it was a lot of pressure, the system fell a few times, you know, shot down, we need to...

 

David Madden: Because you've never had this many users before, right?

 

Claudio Sassaki: We never had. I mean, yeah.

 

David Madden: And did the system fall over?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah.

 

David Madden: How many times?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Three times during that week and we were able to go back quickly, I don't know who, I don’t know how, I mean to tell you the truth and it was just, I don't know. We had to, we got help from someone... absolutely.

 

David Madden: Over 200,000 students use Geekie’s testing product. the servers are shaky but the demand is solid. Using contacts from the pioneering Brazilian social impact accelerator Artemisia, Sassaki is able to raise the cash he needs.

 

All these users also help to improve the product.

 

Claudio Sassaki: In the beginning we had a prediction model that we were trying to predict the score, the real score, and so the more data points we were able to get, the more we could refine our, huh prediction algorithm, so to have a large number of people, not only large but diverse number of people, from different places within Brazil, was really important for us to kind of refine and see how close or how far we were from being able to really predict the, the score.

 

David Madden: And so the next year you find a way to do this on a even bigger scale.

 

Claudio Sassaki: That’s true. The next year we evolved our product, so it was not only the assessment, but once we had the assessment, we offered a full study plan for students with exercises, with texts, with huh, video classes. And the beauty of that is, as the student were... was using the solution, we could gather more data and personalize it. It was a dynamic personalized learning platform. So once we had that solution we thought “well why don't we use the same idea and instead of parting with the Sao Paulo newspaper, why don't we try to shoot for the moon and partner with the largest media company in the country?”  And ultimately that's what happened, we partnered with the largest media company, its newspaper, TV, radio, so we were being broadcasted on a national level. And 2013 it was near to 3 million students who studied for free with our solution.

 

David Madden: Geekie is suddenly getting a lot of attention - from students, from the media and even from the big wigs in Brazil’s government.

 

Claudio Sassaki: We got a call and it was from the minister of education and, I mean, in the beginning we thought it was fake, right? we thought it was someone who was joking.

 

David Madden: Sure!

 

Claudio Sassaki: But...

 

David Madden: It’s not everyday the minister of education calls you.

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah, and he invited us for an audience and they wouldn't tell us what the agenda was. So we flew to the capital of Brazil, Brasilia, and we went to the, to the ministry and when we entered the room the first thing he asked, straight to the point, was: “what the hell are you guys doing?”

 

David Madden: That's the first question, out of the gate.

 

Claudio Sassaki: That's the first question out of the gate, straight to the point.

 

David Madden: Whoa!

 

Claudio Sassaki: I mean clearly he was probably a little bit upset he didn't know much about it. And when, when we explained to him, that we were able to predict the score of the national exam, examination, he looked at the other people from his team and people just, you know, shrugged and said “I don't know if that's true or not”. He said “okay, we need to assess your tool and see if what you're saying is actually true, because if it is, I want everybody to study with this. If it's not, then we have a problem”.

 

David Madden: Whoa!

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah!

 

David Madden: That wasn’t how you planned the conversation

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah, absolutely. It was a shock. And at the end of that process they not only recognized but they certified our solution.

 

David Madden: So this is a pretty big deal.

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah, it was, it was huge, I mean that's what we dreamt of when we created Geekie, right? We got there.

 

David Madden: But of course there’s... there’s always good things and bad things about these moments, right? And so, on the one hand, now you had this... this potential route for getting distributed throughout public schools in Brazil. On the other hand, Brazil's kinda broke right now. So, what’s...how's this gonna pay for itself?

 

Claudio Sassaki: That's when reality hits, right.

 

David Madden: So how… like as you, as you pondered all this, how were you feeling?

 

Claudio Sassaki: It, it was very frustrating, huh, because the first thing we learnt is that there's no legal framework that would support governments to buy a solution like Geekie. There's no, the procurement system is not built to buy technology like ours. It's built to buy books or shelves or pens, but not to buy technology. It took us a long time to find a proper way to work with public schools.

 

David Madden: How did you do that? What, what, what was the answer?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well it was, there was a lot of trial and error, of course, and you know, trying to learn how to navigate the system in a way that we feel comfortable, I mean you see in the papers every day right? What things that are not done properly.

 

David Madden: Sure, yeah. People, people go to jail.

 

Claudio Sassaki: Oh absolutely!

 

David Madden: So this is a, this is a big, this is a big challenge right? because on the one hand you have the chance to do what your dream was which is to fundamentally change education in Brazil, but then, how to actually get it done?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well, that’s the, that’s the biggest challenge I think every entrepreneur who’s trying to innovate in the education sector in Brazil will face, I mean this is just the structural, huh, change that needs to happen and the only way we were able to find to work with public schools was through private sponsorships, so either companies or foundations sponsoring our solution into public schools.

 

David Madden: So give us an example, give us a, give us a real life example of how this comes together.

 

Claudio Sassaki: So…

 

David Madden: Can you remember the first one of these that you ever did?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well the first ones were foundations. It was not difficult to convince them because they had the resources, they were looking for good solutions. The most complicated thing is to coordinate with the public schools, because it's not only coordinating at the high level, but you need to go school by school, principal by principal, teacher by teacher.

 

David Madden: Because you, you need buy in from the school?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah absolutely, otherwise it's just not gonna work.

 

David Madden: And this is also different from the original sales strategy that you had set up, which really just involved convincing a principal or the head of a network of schools to buy this product, this more traditional…

 

Claudio Sassaki: Absolutely.

 

David Madden: ... more traditional sales approach, as whereas this one you gotta to cobble it together, get the school on board...

 

Claudio Sassaki: And that's the trade off, right? Because when we started Geekie, we always thought about the students from the public schools, right? because those are who need the most.

 

David Madden: Right.

 

Claudio Sassaki: However, from a business perspective, public system is not friendly to small companies who lack capital, right? who lack the resources to face a very long sale cycle, very uncertain, there is a lot of political risk. If changes the governor, or the mayor, or the secretary of education, I mean you start from zero again.

 

David Madden: Were you able to find any hacks to this very school by school distribution strategy? Because it must have been very frustrating to have this very very scalable product but then actually getting it in the hands of students and teachers was incredibly manual.

 

Claudio Sassaki: I mean, there was no hack we could find. It was really teacher by teacher, student by student, principal by principal.

 

David Madden: So when we say that Geekie's products are in 5,000 schools, that is the result of years of…

 

Claudio Sassaki: Six years.

 

David Madden: Six years of school by school.

 

Claudio Sassaki: That's exactly right. And I'll tell you it's still... it's an uphill battle for sure, because the legal framework is still not there, so I mean, it's certainly a tiny fraction of what we could be doing at this point.

 

David Madden: How have schools and teachers responded in general to the product?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Students they love it, right? because it's digital, it's built for them, it's like their language, they're used to, either on their cell phones or laptops or tablets, whatever, it suits much more how they would like to study than kind of the traditional textbooks, right? And also there's the instant gratification and feedback so you know what you're missing, you know what you need to study and it automatically prepares that for you.  

 

David Madden: So the kids love it?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Kids love it. I mean, for some reason, I think because of our story there are, there is a lot of emotional attachment from users with Geekie. I mean there’s everyday there’re stories of people who didn't have the means to pay for good quality education but were using Geekie and now are in college.

 

David Madden: Do you have a favorite story? Is there one story, I mean, you must have heard many over the years, but is there, is there one that sort of sticks out to you, that sort of really resonates?

Claudio Sassaki: There's the story of this kid from the state of Sera, his family, you know, did not have the resources to pay for a good school and he found out about Geekie Games. And he tells the story that his mom used to say “hey you're going to get crazy, why are you studying so much?” I mean… and he had this dream of becoming a doctor, right? in medicine, I mean, it's, it’s a, it’s a very difficult program to be accepted.

 

David Madden: Sure.

 

Claudio Sassaki: So because of, um, our platform, he was accepted at a federal university. There's this personal attachment for me because we saw him before, huh, then get into college, and then now graduating. So we saw the full, the full cycle.

 

David Madden: Testing shows Geekie’s products significantly improve students’ results.  

On average, users of “Geekie Games” - which is the learning platform to prepare for the all-important national exam - improved their scores by 30%.  

Geekie makes money by having schools pay for their full featured product but they also have a version that anyone - like that student from Sera - can use for free. Right now, they have more than a million people using the free version.

 

Claudio Sassaki: When you look from a pure playbook type of strategy for a startup, it will tell you, I mean, focus on one user, one problem, one business model. And focus is very important and we agree with that. However, huh, our purpose is really to reach and help every student in Brazil who does not have access to high quality education. So that's why for us to work only with schools is not enough. We need to find ways to reach those people who are not part of schools that are, you know, huh, working with Geekie.  

 

David Madden: One thing that's really interesting Sassaki is that it's not just students who use the product, right?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yes.

 

David Madden: Tell us who else is using it.

 

Claudio Sassaki: One third of our users are adults.

 

David Madden: One third.

 

Claudio Sassaki: One third. That’s a lot.

 

David Madden: Wow!

 

Claudio Sassaki: One third of our students are adults who either didn't finish high school or finished high school but are now trying to go to college.

 

David Madden: One question that Geekie raises, Sassaki, which I'm sure you've thought about a lot, is to what extent is Geekie a bandaid on a broken system, because it's something that's been added to the classrooms, right? I guess my question is, reinventing education for the 21st century, I mean where do you see, where do you see this approach fitting in?

 

Claudio Sassaki: To be honest, it's still a small drop in the ocean, right? We need many many many Geekies to really transform the system. And, I mean what's clear to me is the outcome of the brazilian education system by any metric you look is just a total failure. Kids are just not learning. So it, it really is a structural problem for sure.

 

David Madden: What would it take to get at those structural issues?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Well you, you need, it has to come from the public system because you know 80, 85% of the students are in public schools.

 

David Madden: The importance of reaching students in public schools explains why Geekie has stuck at it, despite how hard it’s been.

Of the 5000 schools currently using Geekie’s product, the vast majority are public.   

In 2017, Geekie signed a deal with Brazilian education company SAS. Now this is important because SAS publishes lots of Brazil's textbooks. Geekie has always struggled with being a “bolt on” to the “traditional” classroom materials, but with this deal, Geekie has a chance to become an integrated part of the core classroom materials throughout the country.

 

Claudio Sassaki: Part of the frustration we have had on over, you know, since we started Geekie is our solutions were complementary to textbooks. And so our impact was limited in some ways when we worked with schools because we needed to adapt our solutions to work together with textbooks, because that’s the core material that the school has.

 

David Madden: Yeah.

 

Claudio Sassaki: So that partnership allowed us to have access to that full content that when we combine that high quality content with our platforms, we can now offer a full solution to schools that replace textbooks, the traditional ones.

 

David Madden: So this is a big deal.

 

Claudio Sassaki: This is a huge deal for us, because right now, we are part of the core experience of the school. With our technology, with the content, capturing the data, the flow is back to teachers, flow is back to principles which before they just didn’t have access to that data because it was all on paper, purely on paper. Right now, they can have the data real time, they can make interventions real time, they can talk and help students, um, succeed before the student fails on an exam because you know in real time whether the student is learning or not. So that changes dramatically how schools operate.

 

David Madden: Hmm. So this leads to this big question which is, what is your ultimate vision for Geekie?

 

Claudio Sassaki: I think Geekie will allow, um, change in the education system that makes it more efficient, makes it more meaningful and allows for the development of, not only getting content or mastering content from textbooks, but also allowing for class dynamics that develop what we call kind of the 21st century skills that they need to succeed in life. And our vision, I mean, of course we believe that our solution works not only in Brazil but could work in other places as well. So we see Geekie as a, as a Brazilian company that at some point will also impact people from other places in the globe that also need high quality education at at lower costs.

 

David Madden: You'd like to take it globally?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Oh absolutely!

 

David Madden: Have you ever regretted this… this big left turn you took?

 

Claudio Sassaki: No, never. Even when I think and when I see my colleagues who used to work with me in banking, I mean, many of them are pretty wealthy people now, right?

 

David Madden: I’m sure.

 

Claudio Sassaki: But there's not a day that I regret because to work with something that you truly believe with people that you respect and admire, to be able to choose who you work with, and how you spend your time, you know, there's no financial reward that could pay for that.

 

David Madden: Well Sassaki, the Geekie story is really pretty incredible and I want to thank you for sharing it.

 

Claudio Sassaki: This is an amazing opportunity, thank you.

 

David Madden: Thanks for making the time.

Thanks for listening to the Revolution of Necessity.

 

If you enjoyed this podcast, it would be great if you could help us out. Please tell your friends and colleagues about it and rate us on Soundcloud, Stitcher, Apple Podcast or whatever your favorite podcast platform is.

We’d also love to hear from you. We’re on Facebook, Twitter, Medium, Instagram, all the links are on revolutionofnecessity.com or go old school and email me: david at revolution of necessity dot com.

Thanks again to Omidyar Network for supporting this podcast. To learn more about what Omidyar does, check them out at omidyar.com.

This episode was produced by Julia Alsop with production assistance from Ellie Lightfoot and editing help from Sarah Barrett. Our engineer is William Smith. Special thanks to Clean Cuts Studios in dc and FX Studios in Sao Paulo.

 

We’ll have another tech story that matters for you next week. See you then.

 

Last question. It's been, um, quite the journey, right? Does Geekie have an anthem? Is there a special song that Geekie…

 

Claudio Sassaki: We certainly have a mantra, we say…

 

David Madden: A mantra?

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah, we have a mantra, it’s something that kind of became our… even if you go to our offices, that's our password for the wifi and in, in English would be something to, something similar to ‘always onwards’.

 

David Madden: Always onwards…

 

Claudio Sassaki: Yeah.

 

David Madden: Can you say it in Portuguese?

 

Claudio Sassaki: “Sempre Frente”

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