Podcasts
March 30, 2022

Building a Purpose Driven Business with Duy Vo

This week on the Scale Academy Podcast, Ned Arick and Hilmon Sorey are joined by Duy Vo, Founder of Productfy, to talk about his journey with embedded finance and how Producfy’s passion and core values have allowed them to cross the chasm and bring their product to the masses.

How the Business Began

As we begin, Duy explains that it all started with the question, “What can I do to put a little bit out there in the world and hopefully make it a better place?” This question then turned into a dream to build a kinder, more empathetic, more socially just financial ecosystem. From there, Duy discovered his passion to start a company that resonates with every single person they hire by enabling any organization to be able to offer a credit union-like experience. Learn more at 00:09.

The Hardest Nut to Crack

At 01:30, Duy explains that there is so much financial arbitrage going on that it naturally sets people on a path to failure. However, if we can get rid of the arbitrage and the predatory behavior and treat it as a service to the people, then people would actually be able to build their credit, build their financial wellness. This means eliminating things such as fees and interest, but is this something that can really be done? Continue listening to learn more.

Go-to-Market Strategy

There is a fundamental difference between the metrics that you would chase as a traditional SaaS company and what they do at Productfy, which is why they do not consider themselves a Saas company. At 05:23, Duy explains that this is why their GTM is focused on running everything, not just the technology, but also the program management, the servicing, the fraud monitoring, etc. And this is also what Duy says is contributing to why embedded finance has not taken off yet- everyone is still thinking with the early adopters and the APIs. Continue listening to learn more about how to cross that chasm into fully understanding embedded financing.

Educating the Buy-In

When you are surrounded by people who are mission-driven and believe in the good just as passionately as you do, especially when it is hard, it allows you to block out the noise and really focus on what matters. Duy explains that by taking their first cohort of clients and learning and scaling from them, they were able to show growth that blew everyone out of the water. During the process of scaling clients, they learned a lot about how to scale their system, which, in turn, allowed them to take it all and put it into a white label solution to show everyone else. Learn more at 09:47.

The Original Hypothesis

Duy thought they could originally build a company by just doing product engineering, but he soon learned that that hypothesis was way off. He found that they needed to do much more on the product side as they scale up to the masses. They needed to be more empathetic to the pain that existed and amp up the program management side of things as well. Listen at 11:47 to learn more.

Segmenting the Marketplace to Find the TAM

Duy explains that Productfy will never do anything that is unethical or illegal. He admits that this can be a challenge sometimes, but it is about doing the right thing, even when it is hard. If they have to walk away from a client for these reasons, they will. However, Duy says that if you work hard enough, you will find that group of cohorts that you can scale with, that doesn’t cross an ethical line, that allows you to learn and cross the chasm to bring it to the majority. Listen at 14:55 to learn more.

Finding the Core People

Duy believes that the key is to just find extraordinary people that believe in the goal; to allow them to make mistakes and know that it is ok, correct it and grow from it. You must find people that share the same core values and align with your mission. Duy employed his network to find the amazing people that are part of Productfy, and he feels that your network is an important place to start. Learn more at 19:16.

What’s Next for Scaling?

Duy has big plans for Productfy. In 2022, he wants to do debit and credit lending in an effort to halt the current predatory behavior. In 2023, he wants to take Productfy global; he wants to build a distributed bank that spans multiple banks across the world. They will be able to offer instantaneous funds transfers, global card issuance, and much more. For more of Duy’s plans for Productfy, listen at 27:06.

The Best Advice

Duy’s biggest piece of advice is to make sure you understand why you are doing what you are doing. This will help breed resilience and aid in ignoring your competitors. If you understand your Why and believe in it, you will always be willing to “water that pot.” Learn more at 31:42.

Anyone that wants to connect with Duy can find him on LinkedIn.

Key Snippets

00:09 How the Business Began

01:30 The Hardest Nut to Crack

05:23 Go-to-Market Strategy

09:47 Educating the Buy-In

11:47 The Original Hypothesis

14:55 Segmenting the Marketplace

19:16 Finding the Core People

27:06 What’s Next for Scaling?

31:42 The Best Advice

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