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The CEO of Wealthsimple on the Key to Success

Entrepreneur Michael Katchen shares advice on learning on the fly and taking risks.

Michael Katchen

In 2012, Toronto-based Michael Katchen made a spreadsheet to teach his friends about investing. Two years later, at 26, he founded millennial-friendly investment management service Wealthsimple. Today, the robo-adviser has added New York and London offices and taken over social media feeds with its relatable ads and interviews with celebrities like Jon Hamm.

1. My go-to app The Wealthsimple app. We tried to make it the simplest way to understand your finances.

2. My eureka moment was realizing that money doesn’t need to be complicated.

3. Best place for a business lunch Terroni in Toronto. I go three times a week and I always get the primavera pizza – something I probably shouldn’t eat three times a week.

4. In business, now’s a good time to become an entrepreneur. There are so many problems that need innovative solutions.

5. What I had to learn on the fly That the key to my own success is to learn at the pace of change.

6. The biggest risk I ever took was starting Wealthsimple. I had never worked in the financial services industry, had no licence to manage money, and our prospective competitors, the banks, are the most competitive institutions in the world.

7. My business mantra Be confident but humble. Have conviction in your ideas, but be open to new ones, and also to feedback.

8. In my carry-on, you’ll find a change of clothes and my Kindle. Right now, I’m reading The Power of Moments by Chip and Dan Heath.

9. I always listen to criticism. If you take feedback from people who want you to be successful, it’s usually enormously helpful.

10. Window or aisle? Aisle. I hate asking people to get up for me.



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