Lecturing 

Areas of expertise

In a career spanning 33 years across over 11 countries, creating businesses that have impacted people's lives in over 83 countries, I can honestly say I'm one of the luckiest people I know: doing what I love most, which is making a difference. Below is an overview of some of the ways I deploy my passion...

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

WHY BOOK YORK

York Zucchi is a Swiss born investor and entrepreneur in Africa since 2007. Previously he worked in numerous countries, with his last post at Goldman Sachs in London. He has worked for 11 years for various organisations around the world and 12 years as an entrepreneur so he understands the two worlds intimately. He also chairs a couple of funds for startups.He has done over 500 workshops, lectures and speaking engagements around the world and worked with hundreds of organizations, from government to corporates to incubators as well as thousands of SMEs. His previous initiative supported SMEs in over 83 countries. He has appeared in numerous media outlets, from the Wall Street Journal to the Financial Times to Entrepreneurship Magazine. He did the world's first TEDx talk on the business of primary healthcare and his work has been captured in various case studies, including one used and marketed by Harvard Business School. His engagements receive great reviews from the attendees who found his style particularly engaging, the material highly memorable and exceptionally informative and often left the session inspired. York’s style is highly energetic, interactive and based on a practical approach to learning new things and changing perspectives. He is particularly effective with interactive engagements, MCs, workshops, seminars and has a powerful track record in assisting people to look at things differently.  Topics and areas where York excels:
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Access to markets 
  • Startups 
  • Sales
  • SME Ecosystems 
  • Innovation
  • Future of work 
The only constant in today’s business environment, is change. The way businesses approach innovation, disruption and the future of work will decide whether they live or die. But is your organisation keeping pace with the newest trends?  If the answer to that question is “no” then you should be booking York Zucchi to speak at your next function.  

TRACK RECORD

I’m not a big fan of sharing my private life but after seeing so many serious CVs out there that make it seem that life is a perfectly planned and executed series of events I thought I’d share with all the young entrepreneurs and aspiring professionals that life has a way of sitting down for coffee with Mr Murphy on a regular basis.I hope you will enjoy the energy, passions and many setbacks I experienced. I loved every minute of it. And that is the essence I wish to convey: live life to the fullest. Don’t worry too much about screwing up. Go out and try. Make a fool of yourself. Gain experiences and live adventures. And as the old saying goes, be nice to people on your way up: they are the ones you will meet on your way down.
Here is a fun article based on my experiences flirting with Mrs Bankruptcy and dancing with Miss Success for 27 years (shared in the hopes it helps my fellow entrepreneurs).
Oh… still here? Ok. About me…
I am a 46 year old Swiss born entrepreneur, investor and innovator with 27 years of business experience (11 years in corporate including companies such as Goldman Sachs, Sal Oppenheim, Al Habtoor etc), 12 in entrepreneurship (one of the companies I co-founded ended up being a case study being used all over the world to showcase doing business in Africa) and some time served in formal education) who is slightly obsessed with coffee, leaving the world in a better state than I found it in and with fixing a desperately broken SME ecosystem. Too fluffy for you? Then how about this: since graduating from University 21 years ago I’ve generated over USD 11m in direct sales and at least USD 420m in indirect sales (where I worked together with others).Curious to know what I’ve learned from my work supporting SMEs across over 83 countries? Simple: successful businesses are built by taking thousands of tiny almost imperceptible steps instead of hoping on big investor-fuelled lucky breaks. 
I’m the chairperson of the global Centre for Unconventional Entrepreneurship, a think tank dedicated to improving the state of entrepreneurship. I also sit on a couple of government funds for startups, own a couple of businesses, am a TEDx speaker, author (2nd book soon), etc. The glue that binds all the things I do? Making an impact.

WHAT OTHERS SAY

His perspective and way of communicating changed our way of doing business. It was a truly insightful event. - Steven Khumalo

YORK PROFILE - VERY SHORT VERSION

Swiss born York Zucchi has worked for over 27 years in 11 countries, from big corporates to being a serial entrepreneur. He chairs the Centre for Unconventional Entrepreneurship, through whose work has impacted SMEs in over 83 countries. Twitter @YZP

YORK PROFILE - SHORT VERSION

Former Goldman Sachs banker and TEDx presenter, York Zucchi is a Swiss born investor and entrepreneur with over 27 years of business experience across many countries. In his career he and the teams he worked with generated over $450 million in sales. He is a strong believer in the power of SMEs to improve the world. His expertise in Access to Markets has impacted SMEs in over 83 countries. He is the chairperson of the global Centre for Unconventional Entrepreneurship as well as involved in various projects with the aim of improving the SME support ecosystem. You can find him on Twitter @YZP or on linkedin www.linkedin.com/in/york-zucchi

YORK PROFILE - LONG VERSION

Former Goldman Sachs banker and TEDx presenter, York Zucchi is a Swiss born investor and entrepreneur with over 27 years of business experience across many countries. In his career he and the teams he worked with generated over $450 million in sales. He is a strong believer in the power of SMEs to improve the world. His expertise in Access to Markets has impacted SMEs in over 83 countries. He is the chairperson of the global Centre for Unconventional Entrepreneurship as well as involved in various projects with the aim of improving the SME support ecosystem. You can find him on Twitter @YZP or on linkedin www.linkedin.com/in/york-zucchi

AUDIENCE

From homeless people to CEOs... from passionate startups to struggling SMEs, from professionals to those in search of meaning. Be it one-on-one or in front of 14.000 people, York's enthusiasm, passion and unconventional yet highly practical approach to looking at things brings leaves people excited but more importantly empowered to change/grow/improve their lives and businesses. He is not a motivational speaker nor a rah rah coach. His passion for what makes businesses work - and more importantly - his ability to convey this in a clear and easy to process manner - has cemented his reputation as a champion for SMEs in many countries. He approach to delivering engagements is always positive, optimistic, action driven and more importantly perhaps engaging. He delivers almost always his content in a fun and highly interactive way that leaves people engaged and ready to take ownership of their destiny.

QUOTES FOR USE

"Africa has a perception attached to it which is often outdated to the realities of it," Mr. Zucchi says. "That mismatch gives a very nice space for people who have a bit of appetite for risk to come into a relatively uncompetitive market." Wall Street Journal 
"A successful business is built on the back of thousands of tiny almost imperceptible steps and not one big lucky break""Entrepreneurs are neither born nor made. They are panel beaten."

PRESS / ARTICLES / MEDIA

York Zucchi has featured in many international magazines, newspapers and media channels. From the early days when the Wall Street Journal started referring to him as "the Chief Coffee Drinker" to him featuring in the Financial Times, Entrepreneur Magazine, Acumen, etc. He is an ad-hoc contributor to various online magazines, including his favourite one "Homeless Talk", a magazine whose proceeds go towards tackling homelessness. A more comprehensive list is available on his LinkedIn profile (though by his own admission he has given up collecting and keeping track).

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS

For bookings contact...

For bookings please contact Beryldene Stemp at bs@guestspeaker.co.za or +27 31 2060091

For all other information please contact me directly on yz@yzp.ch