Piotr Szulczewski is a Polish entrepreneur and computer engineer. He is known for co-founding Wish.com, a mobile e-commerce platform that specializes in affordable goods. Szulczewski was previously the CEO of the company. According to Forbes, he is the youngest billionaire from Canada.
He was born on January 1, 1980, in Szczecin, Poland. Szulczewski grew up in a middle-class family and had a keen interest in technology from a young age. He attended the University of Waterloo in Canada, where he earned a degree in Computer Science.
Piotr Szulczewski grew up in the Tarchomin neighborhood of Warsaw, Poland. When communism collapsed in the country, his parents decided to immigrate to Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, which is about 70 miles (110 km) west of Toronto. Szulczewski attended the University of Waterloo, where he studied mathematics and computer science. It was there that he met Danny Zhang.
In 2004, at the age of 23, Szulczewski moved to Palo Alto, California, just before graduating from the University of Waterloo. He landed a four-month internship coding for Google, which turned into a full-time position. While at Google, he created the prototype algorithms for keyword expansion, a feature that helps advertisers search for products more effectively.
Szulczewski is an avid body builder and has been lifting weights since he was 15.
After completing his studies, Szulczewski began his career at Google, where he worked as a software engineer. He spent several years at the company, during which time he developed a deep understanding of the e-commerce industry.
In June 2007, Szulczewski relocated to South Korea to join the newly established Google office. He learned about the specific needs of the Korean market, which required more detailed search portals than the minimalist ones used in the West. This experience allowed him to develop his skills in catering to the public’s demands.
In 2009, Szulczewski left his position at Google and spent six months writing code for an ads recommendation platform that analyzed a person’s browsing behaviors to predict their interests. He used his savings to start ContextLogic, a software company that received $1.7 million in investments in September 2010, with Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman among its investors. Jerry Yang, the co-founder of Yahoo!, and an investor in Wish through his angel fund, AME Cloud Ventures, described Szulczewski as highly ambitious.
In May 2011, Szulczewski asked his friend Danny Zhang, who was working at Yellowpages.com, to join the new venture as a co-founder, and they rebranded the company as Wishwall.me. Facebook took notice of the new technology and offered $20 million to acquire ContextLogic, but Szulczewski declined the offer.
With Wish.com, Szulczewski’s main objective is to create “the largest, most convenient, and most affordable shopping mall in the world” and to target low-income households. It initially asked people to create wishlists of the items they needed, and the site would then match them up with retailers in China who offered those products. The concept grew and the platform became very popular. As of 2016, Wish.com had over 5 million daily visitors.
Wish.com is an e-commerce platform that allows customers to purchase goods directly from manufacturers in China. The company offers a wide range of products, from electronics and fashion to home goods and beauty products. The platform has gained immense popularity due to its low prices and wide selection of products.
As the CEO of Wish.com, Szulczewski has overseen the company’s rapid growth. In 2017, Wish.com was valued at $8.5 billion, making it one of the most valuable e-commerce platforms in the world. The company has also been successful in expanding globally, with operations in more than 100 countries.
Szulczewski ranked #21 on America’s Richest Entrepreneurs Under 40 list in 2016 and #1605 on Forbes’s list of Billionaires in 2019. He was also named as the 34th wealthiest person and the youngest billionaire from Canada in 2019, as well as the 5th wealthiest Polish billionaire. Despite his success, he prefers to stay out of the spotlight and rarely grants interviews. In fact, he was interviewed for the first time by Polish media in November 2017.
In November 2021, Szulczewski announced that he would be stepping down as Chief Executive Officer. On January 31, 2022, Vijay Talwar was appointed as Chief Executive Officer and a member of Wish’s Board of Directors, effective February 1, 2022. Szulczewski decided to remain on the board.
Piotr Szulczewski’s net worth is estimated to be around $1.9 billion. This is largely due to his success with Wish.com, which has grown to become one of the most valuable e-commerce platforms in the world. In addition to his work at Wish.com, Szulczewski is also an angel investor and has invested in several startups.
Some of his awards and achievements include: