Name: Melanie Shapiro
Title: Founder and CEO of Case
Melanie Shapiro is the Founder and CEO of case - the world's easiest and most secure bitcoin wallet. Case is biometrically secure, GSM-enabled, has a multi-sig and HD architecture, works in 60+ countries, has buy/sell and send/receive functionality, and is small enough to fit in your wallet.
Me: Why are you an entrepreneur?
Melanie: I disengage when I'm not challenged, and I've never felt passionate or challenged enough trying to make other people's visions a reality. A part of me also really likes the chaos of being an entrepreneur, the fight, starting some good-natured trouble, and disrupting conventional wisdom.
Me: What problem would you like solved?
Melanie: For all 2 billion unbanked people to have access to financial services and be able to join the global economy. Financial inclusion is imperative to ending world poverty and can accelerate job creation, investment in education, and give particularly women the ability to have financial independence. Imagine the freedoms people can be introduced to that come with having all of these things.
Me: Advice you’d wished you’d had or had followed?
Melanie: Just do what you love and spend time with people you love. If you let this translate into every single facet of your life, you'll find happiness and success. It may be a tough road making a life doing something you love to do, but the struggle is far less painful when it's for something you're passionate about.
Me: What does success look like for you?
Melanie: Doing work that I respect myself for, and am respected for by others. Being able to come home to a house full of smiling faces.
Me: Who are your heroes?
Melanie: My mom. Her strength and will to fight is remarkable. Sheryl Sandberg, not just for her concept of "leaning in", but for the soft, vulnerable, and beautiful side she showed of herself when her husband passed. Her public messages have been so raw, and I believe were shared all in an effort to help anyone else going through the same struggle.
Me: What is your best discovery?
Melanie: That people aren't just flattering me when they say they have faith in me, and that discovery made me have faith in myself. I've found that we're so quick to accept the criticism but ignore the compliments. We go searching for support but likely it's already there.
Me: What would the title of your biography be?
Melanie: Words of wisdom and weirdness.
Me: What is your biggest regret?
Melanie: That I spent too much time just focused on the end-game. Whether it was the completion of my PhD, the acquisition of our first company, or even my wedding day, I spent a lot of time in my early 20's forgetting to "enjoy the ride". Turning the corner into my 30's gave me a fresh perspective and I am now much more conscious of daily milestones, and making decisions that aren't just to maximize a potential outcome in the future. The result of this perspective shift is that my success is no longer binary.
Me: Anything else we should know about?
Melanie: We're working on some exciting projects and will be making a partnership announcement in the near future.
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