Ben Milne tells Dwolla backstory at Cornstalks

With this Wednesday's Dwolla Meetup on the horizon, an event which promises to deliver "a few huge announcements," we thought it timely to release Ben Milne's five-minute presentation from Cornstalks this past September. Milne is the founder of Dwolla and the event, Cornstalks, is a monthly gathering for high-growth entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs hosted by

With this Wednesday’s Dwolla Meetup on the horizon, an event which promises to deliver “a few huge announcements,” we thought it timely to release Ben Milne‘s five-minute presentation from Cornstalks this past September. Milne is the founder of Dwolla and the event, Cornstalks, is a monthly gathering for high-growth entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs hosted by the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce.

This talk, which pre-dates the $1 million funding announcement of Dwolla, gives a nice summary of the background of the idea and the formation of the company.

“In a nutshell,” Milne said, “Dwolla is a way to move money between people – ties into websites, cell phones, pretty much anything that’s a two-way communication device it could in theory work with – and the cost to use it is 25 cents a transaction.”

Here’s the start of Milne’s talk:

Dwolla is something we created out of a problem at my old company. My old company was called Elemental Designs, we sold speakers on the internet. All the money that came in through selling speakers was all electronic, which is to say it came in through credit cards. As that company scaled up and we stopped trying to grow and just operate on our infrastructure, it was costing us about $50,000 a year in interchancge fees, and at the time, that was pretty upsetting to me because that was my money and I was the only owner.

To hear the rest of Dwolla’s backstory and more (see outline below), watch the following videos of Milne’s presentation at the September Cornstalks. (Note: He mentions Dwolla is located at Foundry Coworking in Des Moines but they’ve since moved. They’re now located in the Midland Building at 206 6th Avenue.)

Outline

  • 0:00 – Where the company name came from
  • 0:13 – Where the idea came from
  • 1:20 – Brief overview of Dwolla and explanation of public beta
  • 2:00 – Next steps

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